Boycotting sporting events will result in “overnight” changes in racial attitudes, according to Martin Luther King III.
Martin Luther King III has stated that boycotting sporting activities would result in a “overnight” revolution in the fight against racism.
The eldest son of Martin Luther King Jr., speaking to British broadcaster Sky Sports News on the anniversary of George Floyd’s death on Tuesday, said that players and athletes refusing to take the field would put team owners and leagues under unsustainable pressure.
As a result, significant changes outside the conventional limits of sports will occur.
“You will have a big backlash in terms of what these [team]owners will change overnight if athletes decide we are not going to play,” he said.
“They’ll change their minds in an instant because sport is such a big industry in our country and around the world. As a result, players have much more power than they might have realized.”
Following Floyd’s passing, the discussion of players’ political and social activism has dominated the American sports landscape over the past year.
Floyd, a Black man, died in Minneapolis on May 25, 2020, after being arrested for allegedly passing a counterfeit $20 bill at a shop.
A bystander captured his arrest on tape, showing then-police officer Derek Chauvin, who is white, kneeling on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes. Chauvin was found guilty of accidental second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree homicide on April 20.
Following Floyd’s death, a number of NBA players took part in protests in support of the Black Lives Matter movement (BLM). The NBA was a leader in social justice efforts, encouraging players to wear social justice messages on their uniforms and kneel during the national anthem.
Meanwhile, four years after former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick first knelt during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice, the NFL has dramatically changed its stance.
In June 2020, league commissioner Roger Goodell denounced racism and admitted that the league had not done enough to respond to black players’ demands for justice.
The NBA also displayed the BLM’s logo on the courts during the postseason and stood by the Milwaukee Bucks’ decision to postpone Game 5 of their playoffs series against the Orlando Magic, following the shooting of Jacob Blake.
Blake, a Black man, was left paralyzed after he was shot seven times in his back by a. This is a brief summary.