The invincible women of the WNBA just accomplished something that’s never been done in the history of sports and it can’t be overstated how inconceivably remarkable it is.
Put your chauvinistic biases and masculine insecurities aside for a minute and consider this Tweet by Jemele Hill (put aside any Trumpian notions you have about her for a moment as well) as it pertains to the Senatorial runoff in Georgia.
I don’t know who needs to hear this but Reverend Raphael Warnock was polling at 9% when the Atlanta Dream and WNBA players threw their full support behind him and elevated his national profile. Now he’s Georgia’s first black Senator.
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) January 6, 2021
I’m no political expert. I don’t think I could go blow for blow with Angela Rye or Marc Lamont Hill. When you talk about being efficient and an assassin of execution, these intellectual commentators take the cake.
But what the women of the majority-Black WNBA accomplished in lifting the unknown Reverend to a seat in the Senate and flipping the balance of power away from the guys who voted down a measly $2000 stimulus check for an insulting $600 drop in the bucket, has got to go down in history as one of the most impressive, impactful and personally invested political power plays ever executed by American athletes.
"I tell you it's just unbelievable. I feel really proud."
Democrat Raphael Warnock is projected to become the first black senator for the state of Georgia. His 82-year-old mother Verlene gave us her reactionhttps://t.co/U6GJlz13uA
— BBC World Service (@bbcworldservice) January 6, 2021
Once sworn in, Warnock will be the 11th African American to serve in the US Senate — a group that includes former President Barack Obama, who served as a US senator from Illinois, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, who is a US senator from California
This moment in WNBA history, American history is a watershed one because it once again reinforces the truth using an athletic platform to encourage and facilitate and inspire systemic change through voting and being united, actually works. In fact, it’s a most lethal weapon when balancing the scales, thus always under attack.
Former Senator Kelly Loeffler and her husband are still worth $800M. And she still owns the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream — for now. But the hill she chose to die on in 2020, will forever haunt her and leave her reputation and legacy on the wrong side of history.
You have a WNBA owner who — instead of showing solidarity with the incredibly brave, socially conscious and talented players of her league during a moment in history when the world was in a period of enlightenment as it pertains to racism and oppression and white privilege in this country — decided to align herself with the very element, the very source of the social injustice that the entire league was fighting against.
I mean she brought this on herself. Her political career was soaring and her players weren’t getting in her way. She didn’t have a reputation as a right-wing apologist. Nobody really even knew who she was. Just a rich white woman. Once she spits venom at her own players and the league’s Black Lives Matter initiatives, she identified herself as enemy No. 1.
She not only left her players out in the cold, but she also criticized a Black Lives Matter platform that the entire league dedicated its season to and never lent an ounce of support or acknowledged the pain of the women she pays peanuts to enhance her financial portfolio.
Kelly Loeffler’s Politics Don’t Jive With WNBA’s Black Lives Matter Initiatives
— The Shadow League (@ShadowLeague) January 6, 2021
She thought she was walking the dog and got bit by the sharp teeth of revolution. Her paper is straight, but her money isn’t good in the hood anymore. As a matter of fact, some people with deep pockets and an appreciation for athletes who sacrifice careers in the name of social justice and racial harmony, are already scheming to move Loeffler out.
— LeBron James (@KingJames) January 6, 2021
I know she’s the White Queen. The iron first with platinum on the wrist in Atlanta and surrounding areas, but how can she even face her team after this debacle?
How can she look women like Natasha Cloud, Renee Montgomery, Maya Moore or colleagues like superwoman Stacey Abrams, in the eye? She can’t and never did. She looked down upon these women. These frontline bulldozers for justice. Let’s just tell it like it is, she slept on the power of the Black woman.
She thought voter suppression had ended Abrams’ run as an elite politician. Instead, Stacey almost singlehandedly galvanized the Black vote, liberated the Black vote, and lifted the descendants of the former slaves of Georgia to an unprecedented glass ceiling smash that changes the face of politics in the confederate South forever.
Super Teams: Stacey Abrams & The WNBA Women
The relationship between Abrams and the women of the WNBA dates back to August of 2019, as the players were negotiating a new collective bargaining deal.
The WNBA Players Association brought out the big guns to help them in their fight against the league, announcing a “super team” made up of people from the business, politics, entertainment, media, and sports world to work as a Board of Advocates, in their attempt to gain better pay and working conditions.
Abrams (Founder, Fair Fight and former Minority Leader, Georgia House of Representatives) was among the distinguished board members.
READ MORE: WNBA And WNBAPA Reach New Deal
“As the first labor union to represent women, professional athletes, we are thrilled to announce our collaboration with the Board of Advocates,” said WNBPA president Nneka Ogwumike in a statement. “The WNBPA’s rallying cry for us and working women around the world is “Bet on Women” – a message reinforced and embodied by each member of the Board.”
The Losing Team
Loeffler’s allegiance to white men, racial oppression, and misplaced elitism has entangled her in a political turnbuckle. The result is a loss in the US Senate runoff race.
She chose to be a pawn in a game rather than a leader of a historical movement that would have elevated her to status and potential power that she would never achieve living as an oppressive player in a white power hierarchy that has devalued Black lives, poor people and contributed heavily to the prison industrial complex.
I must admit, Loeffler would make a hell of a poker partner. She pushed her chips to the middle of the table and went all-in with the Trump ticket. However, when the former President called her “Karen” at a recent rally, you knew it was lights out for her. It was proof of her choice to be a political pawn rather than “Bet on Women.”
I’m sure she has a strong resolve to her. She’s definitely book smart. Her achievements are evident. It’s her heart, ethics and credibility as a leader that is questionable right now. Her ownership style doesn’t fit the globally-inclusive, socially conscious, politically-charged evolution that the WNBA is experiencing.
People worth $800 million dollars tend to think that money and power will conquer all. Loeffler found out first hand that the “power of the people” is still a real live thing. You have a right to be an athlete and participate in shaping your country. The women of the WNBA have been proving that long before George Floyd‘s death kickstarted an awakening in America.
We can’t ignore the magnitude of this moment in history and who led the charge. WNBA.