Athletes & Activism

life life after sports Jun 04, 2020

Athletes and Activism 

What you can do to make a difference 

Sports are part of the fabric of American society, and often they've provided a medium for athlete protest. In recent years, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick was the face of the movement. In 2016, he began kneeling before games, during the playing of the national anthem, to protest police treatment of minorities and social inequality. Read more

Since last week's death of George Floyd, an African American man who died after a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck, there's been a surge of sports figures speaking out. Some have even joined demonstrations that have swept the nation. Read more…

Also, the recent tension between Drew Brees’ remarks on the NFL taking a knee to join Colin Kaepernick's cause for racial equality has athletes using their platforms more to voice their opinions. 

Everyone wants peace, equality, and a better world, and it’s going to take all of us to make it happen. 

Here are five ways you can make a difference during times of injustice:

1. Listen.

Consider hosting a virtual event where people can voice their pain. Create a submission form on your website for fans to share their opinion with you. Pick up the phone and ask someone of a different race or different viewpoint to share their perspective with you. 

 “Protests are the language of the unheard.” ~ Martin Luther King Jr., Pastor, Civil Rights Legend, and advocate on nonviolence

2. Research. 

 Feelings are real, but they are not facts. We owe it to ourselves and the world to learn about injustices, systemic racism and our nation’s history. Being informed is vital in effectuating positive change. 

3. Say something. 

We know it’s hard to know what to say, but your voice can make a difference. 

“Say the wrong thing and you may be attacked and make things worse. Say the right thing and you may be attacked and make things worse. So what? Learn. Toughen up. Apologize… But, please say something… ~ Darryll Stinson, Founder & CEO of Second Chance Athletes

“The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.” Martin Luther King Jr. 

4. Do something. 

 Actions speak louder than words. What we say is extremely powerful, but what we do is even more impactful. Here are a few ideas for you to consider. Pick one or two to make a difference. 

  • Write a letter to local and/or national government officials. 
  • Attend a non-violent protest 
  • Publish a positive, loving, ‘bridge-building” social media post
  • Read books and articles from different perspectives 
  • Have a conversion with people of different races and different viewpoints 

5. Consider this… 

If every law were just, and there was no systemic racism and every person in power was full of love, would there still be prejudice in the world? 

Probably. Why? 

Because laws and rules only lead people to modify their behavior, but it doesn’t transform their hearts. 

Evil will always exist. And it is evil, not people that cause division and hatred. 

“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” ~ Ephesians 6:12 

We believe that faith in Jesus is the only way a heart can be transformed, and a nation can be healed. 

We’d love to talk more about our faith with you. If you want to know how he can heal your heart, transform your life and heal our nation then shoot us an email titled FAITH to [email protected] Or sign up for a 10-minute conversation with our CEO by clicking the following link: https://bit.ly/faithconversation

“Jesus is the only answer to prejudice and injustice. He’s the only answer, but He’s not the only means. Faith in Christ doesn’t replace civil discourse, peaceful protests or other methods of racial reconciliation and creating equality. It actually makes all of those things more effective. Our world needs faith and action. Not either-or, but both-and. Jesus loves us, forgives us and cares about what’s going on in our lives. Consider what he can do in and through your life in this world, and the world to come…” Darryll Stinson. 

Whether it’s a listening ear or an active (nonviolent) protest, each one of us can make a difference. Let’s change our world for the better — together. 

Written by Darryll Stinson

Darryll Stinson is a speaker, pastor and Founder of Second Chance Athletes.

Follow him on Instagram @stinsonspeaks for more of his work.

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