After tearing ligaments in her knee and missing the entire 2019 WNBA season, Las Vegas Aces star Angel McCoughtry took to Instagram to announce that she’ll finally be returning to the court this upcoming season. But that wasn’t her only announcement, as she intends to use her platform to address the police brutality and racial inequality that permeates our society.
“I will be playing this upcoming @wnba [season] and I am looking forward to continue to fight social injustice issues while playing and supporting front line workers,” she posted on Instagram.
To that end, the five-time WNBA All-Star revealed her desire to take the mantra “listen to black women” to another level.
“I am currently working with the [Las Vegas Aces] and @wnba to use our voices, our uniforms, and our sport to continue to impact and create real change,” she wrote. “I am creating a petition (LINK IN BIO) to allow players the ability to put the FIRST & LAST NAME of HUMAN BEINGS that who have been injured or KILLED in incidents involving POLICE BRUTALITY!”
McCoughtry’s petition comes at a time where the NBA is embroiled in a Civil War of sorts, as a coalition of players have openly expressed their hesitation to resume the 2019-20 NBA season due to the belief that it will detract from the progress being made by the Black Lives Matter movement.
In a statement to CNN, Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard shared his reluctance.
“Basketball, or entertainment period, isn’t needed at this moment, and will only be a distraction,” he wrote. “Sure it might not distract us the players, but we have resources at hand majority of our community don’t have. And the smallest distraction for them, can start a trickle down effect that may never stop. Especially with the way the climate is now. I would love nothing more than to win my very first NBA Championship. But the unity of My People would be an even bigger Championship, that’s just to (sic) beautiful to pass up.”
Other players, such as LeBron James, have maintained that athletes can chew gum and walk at the same time, in that they can continue their season while using their platforms to contribute to the movement—which is something McCoughtry is clearly committed to doing.
“Silence is an ally for EVIL and when sports resume WE WILL NOT BE SILENT,” she wrote on Instagram.
It’s been said time and time and time and time again that black women will never lead us astray, and while it’s unlikely that the WNBA will allow players to wear the names of victims of police brutality on their jerseys, it’s clear that the upcoming season won’t prevent McCoughtry from contributing to the cause.