I see a lot of people struggling to understand what boycotting games does, so I’ll take a second to explain.
First off, these protests are in response to the James Blake shooting, which took place in Wisconsin. The significance of the Milwaukee Bucks and Brewers boycotting games is larger than the other teams, due to the fact that those teams are from that state. It puts pressure on the owners of the teams, who have substantial social power, to stand by their players. Other fans will stand by their teams boycotting the games, and the pressure will mount on government officials to entertain what the players are asking for.
This issue is bigger than sports. Seeing athletes use their platforms to speak out and seek reform on some of the issues that plague our society is inspiring. Athletes can reach and relate to their fans in different ways than politicians. Having an athlete like LeBron James encourage people to vote will probably reach more teenagers than a political advertisement saying vote for this person. Athletes can make a change, and it’s definitely encouraging to see them use their platform to stand for what they believe in. Despite many saying these postponements are pointless, they actually have substantial meaning and show that athletes are pushing for change.
(Originally posted on August 26, 2020)