This past week, the Golden State Warriors dethroned the Cleveland Cavaliers and won the NBA championship. Every year the champion of goes on a visit to the White House. With a president like Donald Trump in office, some teams have had second thoughts about visiting.
Immediately after the victory, the question rose: Will the Warriors visit the White House? Some of the biggest criticism of President Trump in professional sports has come from these Warriors. From Coach Steve Kerr describing Trump as a “blowhard” and “ill-suited,” to superstar Stephen Curry referring to Trump as an “asset,” but without the “et.”
Sports offers a unique platform for athletes to express their political views. Think Colin Kaepernick refusing to stand for the National Anthem, and Muhammad Ali refusing army induction during the Vietnam War. While these two men stood in completely different time periods, their messages were alike: “I will stand for what I believe is right.”
Golden State, similar to Ali and Kaepernick, has the opportunity to make a statement. But, there is also the other side of visiting. Millions of people would cherish the moment of visiting the White House, no matter the person in office. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver told The Undefeated last December, that not visiting the White House would be “a lost opportunity.”
And in a sense, Silver is completely correct. Any person apart of the team will be able to directly tell the president their thoughts on an issue.
The New England Patriots, missing star athlete Tom Brady, saw numbers decline from their visit two years ago. A 16 person difference between 2017 and 2015 according to New York Times’ sports editor Jason Stallman. President Trump immediately took to Twitter to express his anger towards Stallman. Trump stated in his tweet referring to the numbers, that the New York Times “just got caught in a big lie.”
President Trump is already caught in an abundance of scandals that have destroyed his moral. The Golden State Warriors deciding to not visit the White House will only show how much politics really do matter in sports. We are at a time in our country where our own president is in the middle of an enormous scandal. The Warriors will speak for all of the people who are distraught with the state of our union, by not visiting the White House.
A professional sports team has never boycotted the visit. The Warriors have the chance to not only become the first, but the first to make a colossal statement against the most controversial president in our countries history.
Now it might seem that a professional team deciding to not visit President Trump will not affect him at all. Unfortunately like a two-month old toddler, our president requires attention to survive. And with arguably the greatest NBA team of all-time not giving the wanted attention to President Trump, it will allow him to realize how agitated the people are.
Like Ali and Kaepernick, sports became their platform to come out for what they believe is right. Now it’s time for the Warriors. Whether it is 1967 or 2017, the power of sports can never be underestimated.