The New York Jets released a statement this afternoon, announcing that they have donated approximately $1 million to various social justice organizations. Most NBA, MLB, NHL, and NCAA teams have committed to gestures and hashtags but have taken no action to further these causes. The Jets are different. If sports franchises or celebrities want to prove they care about our underserved communities, then they need to do what the Jets are doing here.
Jets announced a $1,000,000 donation to four partner organizations as part of the team’s social justice, inclusion and diversity efforts.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 22, 2020
These organizations share the goal of reducing barriers and creating opportunities for individuals in need. pic.twitter.com/7miyeWqdKA
Put your money where your mouth is
Arguments can be made that there are better ways to improve life for minorities in this country. Some will say that financial investments will do little. What’s non-negotiable is that donating your own money where you see fit is how social justice should be pursued. Instead of slapping stickers on the back of a helmets and stitching patches that makes the hearts of white liberals throb, maybe athletes should instead invest their time and energy to the causes these symbols support. That’s what the New York Jets have decided to do and it should, in theory, encourage others to invest resources where they personally see fit.
The press release also claims that players are expected to get involved.
“New York Jets players and staff will have the opportunity to volunteer their time and expertise on various upcoming projects with each organization.”
The team should insist that their players donate at least some time, if not their money, to the organization of their choosing. Athletes have boasted for years that they are “More Than An Athlete,” but if that’s the legacy they want, then they we should make them earn it.
Regardless, they deserve credit
Props to the Jets organization for making a real effort to fight for what they believe in. They may not have chosen organizations we agree with, but it’s not our money.