WNBA team co-owner and Georgia U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler, says she is against the league’s plans to honor the Black Lives Matter movement this season because espousing a “particular political agenda undermines the potential of the sport and sends a message of exclusion.”
The GOP Sen., who has been a co-owner of the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream since 2011, sent an open letter to Commissioner Cathy Engelbert urging her to scrap plans to add BLM slogans to jerseys and instead put an American flag on uniforms, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported.
“I adamantly oppose the Black Lives Matter political movement, which has advocated for the defunding of police, called for the removal of Jesus from churches and the disruption of the nuclear family structure, harbored anti-Semitic views, and promoted violence and destruction across the country,” Loeffler said in the letter.
“I believe it is totally misaligned with the values and goals of the WNBA and the Atlanta Dream, where we support tolerance and inclusion,” she continued.
“The truth is, we need less—not more politics in sports. In a time when polarizing politics is as divisive as ever, sports has the power to be a unifying antidote,” the Sen. said in her letter, adding, “And now more than ever, we should be united in our goal to remove politics from sports.”
WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert responded to Loeffler’s comments in a statement Tuesday.
“The WNBA is based on the principle of equal and fair treatment of all people and we, along with the teams and players, will continue to use our platforms to vigorously advocate for social justice,” Englebert said in the statement.
“Sen. Kelly Loeffler has not served as a Governor of the Atlanta Dream since October 2019 and is no longer involved in the day-to-day business of the team.”
The following was released by the WNBA: pic.twitter.com/wH6ZmyDDcx
— WNBA (@WNBA) July 7, 2020
Several players also commented on Loeffler’s letter, and naturally one immediately jumped to the accusation that the Sen. is just like a slave master.
“I can’t believe I ever stepped foot in Kelly’s house and shared a meal with her. It’s actually really hurtful to see her true colors,” former player Layshia Clarendon tweeted. “I had no idea while I played for ATL she felt this way. Happy to own us as long as we stay quiet and perform.”
The WNBA players union simply demanded that Loeffler be thrown out of the league.
— WNBPA (@TheWNBPA) July 7, 2020
Phoenix Mercury player Skylar Diggins-Smith also tweeted that the league should throw Loeffler out.
— Skylar Diggins-Smith (@SkyDigg4) July 4, 2020
Other players also went on the attack:
Let me be clear: we don’t give a damn what you think @KLoeffler. Cut all ties with the league, stop giving your bigoted opinions about black affairs, & tend to ur insider trading sweetheart 💅🏾 https://t.co/KYZHUlrvXU
— Sydney Colson (@SydJColson) July 7, 2020
Get her weak ass out of our league. https://t.co/wcWqJNIWtK
— Natasha Cloud (@T_Cloud4) July 4, 2020
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