AFL-CIO: The Intersection Between Professional Athletes and the Labor Movement

Labor News

Reprinted from The AFL-CIO’s Now by Dave Zirin on October 21, 2016.

This is a historic moment at the intersection of sports and politics. While the anthem protests of San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick against police violence are the most visible manifestation of this, we are witnessing an unprecedented number of athletes—from the pros to the NCAAs to high school and even to middle school teams—using their hyper-exalted platform and community standing to try and say something about the issues of racial and social justice. This new generation of “jocks for justice” has been inspired to act by struggles in the streets like the #BlackLivesMatter movement, as well as the ability of athletes to leverage social media in order to go around traditional sports media filters to speak directly to fans. They also are inspired by impatience and the guiding principle that justice delayed is justice denied. …

AFL-CIO now 10/21

About Jeffrey Burman 1172 Articles
Jeff Burman represents assistant editors on the Guild’s Board of Directors. He can be reached at jeffrey.burman@nbcuni.com.

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