The unprecedented move by the NBA and WNBA players to boycott their own games is something that we have never witnessed in our lifetime. It’s one thing to put messages on the back of their uniforms, but it is a whole other thing to refuse to play the game.
Now that the NBA Players have completed their latest go around on their NBA 2020 season rollercoaster ride, it is clear to everyone that the NBA playoffs nearly got canceled not because of the coronavirus but because of police officers continuing to shot unarmed people.
Ultimately the NBA players have decided to resume the playoffs at some point in the next couple days.
On Wednesday ESPN’s Michael Wilbon’s explanation of the situation appeared to be the most dialed in. During Pardon the Interruption, Wilbon gave a clear and concise explanation of the complexities of the social injustice issues.
“I imagined it last night. Yeah, you could see it coming,” Wilbon said. “Before Doc even talked, just listening to players – I talked with a few people in the bubble and a lot of people outside of it – and this was percolating. Yes, because the short-term is to get people to stop killing folks. That’s the short-term goal. Stop shooting me. Stop. . .
“Make it so that I can not look over my shoulder at a police car and worry if my son is going to be safe in the car. These are the immediate questions that we are dealing with and this is the emotion you heard in Doc’s voice. Look, think about the complexity for Doc, the perspective. His father was a cop. I knew Doc’s father. I mean, it’s so difficult and the point of view can be different from person to person, but the first goal is stop killing people.
“And Tony, I told you all spring, I am not singing kumbaya. I don’t believe that the country has made a turn, I don’t. Because people are still getting shot. When people are not getting shot anymore, then I’ll say okay, let’s hold hands and sing kumbaya. But I told you all spring, I am cynical about this. This is why. Kenosha, Wisconsin, is why.”
I recommend watching the entire 6:38 video below.
The MIGHTY Line
The point Wilbon makes about our first goal needs to be we need to stop killing people and the follow-up point he makes about people no longer getting shot is right in-line with the fundamental issue at hand.
While we all understand the results of social injustice, it is as clear as water is wet that these problems will continue to plague our society until real police reform is rolled out across the country.
No, I’m not talking about defunding the police if anything we should give police departments more money to retrain their officers on how to de-escalate situations. Clearly, there needs to be a new national policy put in place that lays out when gun use is permitted.
Unfortunately, I agree with Wilbon’s cynical look at the situation. As I mentioned nothing is going to change until there is police reform and I’m worried that the next incident is literally right around the corner.