New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony is a scorer, a leader, and the face of the franchise. Anthony takes blame for losses and is praised for wins. Fans, media, teammates, and coaches talk about his presence on the basketball court. But his involvement in the community and is not talked about enough. Anthony owns a venture capital technology fund, holds a 3 on 3 tournaments in Baltimore every year for the community, opened a community center for helping kids, and donated significant money for the Indian Ocean tsunami victims.
Carmelo Anthony Addresses Social Change
His latest message should be remembered the most. His latest message addressed the racial and violent climate of America. Anthony, Chris Paul, Dwyane Wade, and LeBron James volunteered and orchestrated the opening to the ESPY’s. This is not a one-time concern. Anthony has long been an activist, make no mistake about that.
“No way,” Anthony says. “This isn’t just about basketball. I hate just being known that way. It’s got to be bigger than that.”
Basketball, for better or worse, has been the vehicle for Anthony. He has not seen it as the only thing he will ever do. In fact, Anthony has always been in the works to create a legacy beyond basketball. Two years ago ESPN wrote, “He wants to be known in 20 years not only as ‘the basketball player but also as the innovator, the business tycoon.’ He wants to invest in startups and multiply his bank account by 100, because maybe billions can solidify a reputation in ways that millions can’t.”
NBA Stars Concern
The cynic might see this as an athlete reaching for more power and more money. Instead, Carmelo Anthony is always concerned about the big picture. His statements prove that he is sincere.
No athlete should think: If I speak up, I’m going to lose an endorsement or a sponsorship. Because if that’s the case then you have to question the kind of people that you’re doing business with and ask yourself where their heads and morals are at.
He is a man who worries about America. He came from Baltimore violence. He saw friends in his life not reach the success he has. He wants to make a difference with the chance he has.
Everybody uses fame for different reasons. But at a time like this, you have to put aside the politics of business and whether a sponsor or somebody from a company that you represent is going to call you about it. If you’re a human being, this affects everybody.
His statement isn’t to pressure the public or the athletes. This is not another passive aggressive or actually aggressive call to arms. The statement made on ESPN by these athletes is about change.
If you don’t feel like you want to make a statement or make a stand, then don’t do it. You shouldn’t feel forced to do it. You have to want to do that.
Carmelo Anthony in many ways was saved by basketball. Stanley Kay of Sports Illustrated wrote, “He played sports with his friends to stay out of trouble. The boy later said that drug dealers pushed him away from the streets. ‘I guess they saw something in me,’ he said in 2006.”
What they saw in the second boy was his remarkable basketball talent. His name, now familiar to fans all over the world, is Carmelo Anthony.
What Can You Do?
Now he and other stars are using basketball to save America. So, talk about his legacy the next time you watch Anthony play. Instead of talking about stats, season, or percentages, talk about changes to America. Peace for America.
For more information on organizations visit: http://www.racialequityresourceguide.org/organizations/organizations/sectionFilter/Racial%20Healing.