While NBA players continue to find ways to take a stand against racial injustice amid a potential return to the 2019-20 season, NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace has managed to make progress of his own in his sport.
As NASCAR’s only full-time African-American driver, Wallace has used his platform to speak out against systemic racism by leading the charge to ban all confederate flags at racing events. Unfortunately, his efforts resulted in some unsavory drawback after a purported noose was found hanging in his garage area.
NASCAR launched an immediate investigation after being made aware of the incident, and the FBI determined the rope had been there before Wallace and his crew moved in. Prior to that, high-profile athletes such as Los Angeles Lakers All-Star LeBron James made sure to offer their support.
James took a stand with Wallace and all that he has managed to accomplish in his sport amid these troubling times:
Sickening! @BubbaWallace my brother! Know you don’t stand alone! I’m right here with you as well as every other athlete. I just want to continue to say how proud I am of you for continuing to take a stand for change here in America and sports! @NASCAR I salute you as well! 🙏🏾✊🏾👑 https://t.co/1TwkjVHai5
— LeBron James (@KingJames) June 22, 2020
James has long been among the most outspoken athletes in sports when it comes to shining a light on the trials and tribulations that the black community has had to overcome. Of course, his efforts are backed by the fact that the NBA is the most progressive, player-centric league in the world and their words carry plenty of weight in the front office.
It is safe to say that Wallace’s actions have been magnified given the beliefs of this particular fan base, which is why other athletes like James have commended NASCAR for helping him usher in true change. The sport being able to stand in solidarity with its only full-time Black driver is indicative of the necessary change that other household names in different leagues are pushing for.
Regardless, it is clear that some sports still have a longer way to go than others and NASCAR is seemingly taking steps toward catching up with those like the NBA. Given the current restrictions in place due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, there is plenty of speculation that the person who hung it may have been someone with access to the area.
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