NBA Jersey Protests: Social Messages are Controversial, Truthful and Necessary

Basketball fanatic or not, it is easy to see the changes that have taken place during the 2020 NBA season. Across the board, literally, everything seems to have transformed to reflect both the global pandemic, and the racial pandemic that has threatened the lives of black and brown people. From the missing physical sea of screaming fans, to the required face masks, to the removed last names from a majority of the players’ jerseys that now bear simple yet powerful messages—there is much to talk about.

“‘How Many More,’ ‘Say Their Names,’ and ‘Power to the People,’ are just some of the phrases people can see on the backs of players who have been more than vocal about police brutality, racism, and social injustices. This form of protest and solidarity is a sight to behold, especially given the backlash that Colin Kapernick received after his controversial 2016 kneel during the national anthem at an NFL game. Even more shocking and bold is the large ‘BLACK LIVES MATTER’ printed on the court. It serves as the perfect slap in the face to any racists who may be tuning in, as the message gets more visibility on camera than some of the players’ faces.

The Black Lives Matter movement was birthed in July 2013, as a hashtag, after the acquittal of George Zimmerman, who murdered an innocent black teen, Trayvon Martin, in 2012. It was founded by Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi, and became nationally recognized after the senseless and unjust murders of Eric Garner and Michael Brown at the hands of police. Recent tragedies like the killings of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd have catapulted the advocacy movement into the stratosphere, in hopes that police reform will be made. Today, celebrities, renowned artists, political figures, and everyday people regularly use it on social media.

Though NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, gave the green light for all of these changes prior to the league resuming, and obviously supports the messages and what they stand for, there are always naysayers and individuals who would rather sports figures show up and play than get involved with social and political issues.

“THE NBA IS A JOKE!” says one YouTube user, in capitalized letters.

“This is censorship!” another user declares. “I’m done with the NFL, and it looks like the NBA is next.”

Even Charles Barkley has commented his respectful dissent with these social messages being displayed, but how can the players, some of whom have been victims of racial profiling and social injustices, turn a blind eye to such an ongoing and oppressing issue? Quite simply, they cannot.

Over 280 players decided to use their jerseys as platforms to speak out; however, there were a handful that continued to wear their surnames proudly. One of those 17 players was Los Angeles Lakers’ superstar, LeBron James. In a virtual interview, he said, “I don’t need to have something on the back of my jersey for people to understand my mission or know what I’m about and what I’m here to do.” In many other ways, LeBron has done a lot to promote and support the Black Lives Matter movement and black lives in general, and for the voiceless, that is more than enough.

One may ask, how long will the social messages be worn? But a better question that we ALL must ask ourselves, is how long will social injustices go on?

Olivia Shaw-Reel

+ posts



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This industry is still so new and evolving. It’s up for the grabs! It’s time to go get it! Educate yourself and get involved with the movement!

#blackcannabis #cannaclubucla #cannabiseducation #womenincannabisindustry #ucla #womeninweedbusiness #education #LA #californiacannabis

67 3

Join us on Thursday August 13th @ 9pm EST/6pm PST for the Black Cannabis Show live podcast w/ host Jacque Howard. @trenton_365
Guests: Seun Adedeji, Founder & CEO of @Elev8cannabis and Will Perry Co-Owner & Grower of Magic Hour Cannabis @willgrowsit
Join us on Facebook Live: BlackCanna420 &

#blackcannabis #cannabis #elev8 #magichourcannabis #cultivators #oregoncannabis #entrepreneurs #peopleofcolorincannabis #blackownedbusiness #peopleofcolor #growers

109 4

Cheef Cake album out now on all platforms!
what’s your favorite song?


69 3

The Joint Cheefs takeover has begun! We got merch to give away on our road to 4K.

All you have to do is follow @thejointcheefs and join in on our live tonight at 9pm!

New album #CheefCake out now on all platforms!

44 7

Roll up with The Joint Cheefs @thejointcheefs this Friday Aug. 7th at 9pm on the Black Cannabis IG Live Takeover. Come chill, chop it up and smoke with the fellas and listen to their new album Cheef Cake streaming now on all major platforms!

#blackcannabis #thejointcheefs #goodmusic #smoke #cannabis #rollup #music #hiphop #chill #blackcannabistakeover #takeover #hiphop

88 1

We stand, we fight, we advocate! For all the black and brown people that have been disproportionately targeted by the “War on Drugs”. Advocacy should be at the foundation of any business working in cannabis. Black Cannabis will continue to acknowledge and fight for those that have been stripped their voices due to a system that was never meant to include them!

#catpacker #minoritiesincannabis #cannabispolicy #cannabispolitics #stopthewarondrugs #cannabisregulations #blackcannabis #womenincannabisindustry #womeninweedbusiness

98 1

Happy Monday! Thank you to all of our new followers and those who have been supporting us from the beginning! We have some really exciting projects coming up and our small team is beyond grateful to have all our cannapreneurs here for the ride! In these crazy times it’s so empowering to know that cannabis has remained essential. In so many aspects of the business we have seen time and time again, CANNABIS IS MEDICINE! We thank all those that despite adversity have remained doing the hard work to destigmatize the plant and it’s benefits!

As a media company we look to provide the most quality, relevant, and entertaining information and content to our consumers. @_blackcannabis will continue to lift the voices of minorities, women, and vets in the industry! We look forward to you becoming apart of this pivotal moment in History with us!

228 11

Join us on Sunday August 9th @ 9pm EST/6pm PST for the Black Cannabis Show live podcast w/ host Jacque Howard. @trenton_365
Guest: Melanie Julian @thecannabisdoula, The Cannabis Doula
Join us on Facebook Live: BlackCanna420 &

#blackcannabis #cannabis #doula #thecannabisdoula #womenincannabis #education #entrepreneurs #peopleofcolorincannabis #blackownedbusiness #peopleofcolor #womenincannabisindustry

135 4

Join us on Sunday August 2nd @ 9pm EST/6pm PST for the Black Cannabis Show live podcast w/ host Jacque Howard. @trenton_365
Guests: Tangy (Jayn Green) @_jayngreen Marine Corps. Vet & CEO of cannabis brand Jayn Green, Stacy Randall @ginjablast U.S. Army Veteran and Co-Owner of GinjaBlast, & Julia Thompson @armychica12 U.S. Army Veteran & Advocate
Join us on Facebook Live: BlackCanna420 &

#blackcannabis #cannabis #jayngreen #ginjablast #womenincannabis #advocate #entrepreneurs #womeninthemilitary #usmilitary #March2020 #ShelbyTylerJones #ChristopherSawyer #RaulTorrez #ShaquanAlfred #FreddyDelacruzjr #VictorD'Onofrio #April2020 #VanessaGuillen #May2020 #BrandonRosecrans #June2020 #GregoryWedelMorales #gunshotwounds #ARMYCID #FortHood #Texas #DOJ #cannabisforveterans

143 11

We are giving away Papa and Barkley CBD Product to 1 lucky person! Follow the above rules and a random participant will be chosen Thursday July 30th. Entries are limited to 1 per participant.

You must be following Black Cannabis in order to win.

Per Instagram rules, this promotion is in no way sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram, Inc. By entering entrants confirm that they are 18+ years of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to Instagram's terms of use.

#blackcannabis #papaandbarkley #CBD #giveaway #tinctures #balms #lotions #free #contest #follow #like #tag #gifts #freegiveaway #giveawaytime

236 81

New @valonadenise. Are you feeling it? Available now on @youtube Tap in. All love #newmusic #hipve #valonadenise #shade45 #hot97 #complex #podcast #cannabiscommunity #hemplife #radio #playlist #jersey ...

60 1