Athletics and Activism: A Series

Originally published at: Athletics and Activism: A Series -Part 1: Truth and Reconciliation – Running Hot Takes

Part 1: Truth and Reconciliation The community nature of sports gives athletes a unique position of influence in society and a platform that can be a powerful tool to spur social change –even fringe Canadian university sports can have many supporters. There are numerous examples throughout history where athletes chose to use their platforms to…

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Nice one, Evan!

In this age of corporate “woke-washing” and national “sports-washing”, athletes for progressive social change need to think more about organizing to subvert, rather than allowing themselves to be implicated in, the “messaging” of their universities and governments.

Student-athletes, when your university engages in this kind of behaviour-- and they all do to one extent or another-- take it as an opportunity to provoke a deeper, more critical discussion of the larger issue in question within your sport and larger school community. Write an article for your school paper (they are always looking for content!). Encourage your athlete council (if you have one at your school) to speak out and take a position on issues of national importance when the opportunity presents itself. There are many ways to agitate for change, and your status as athletes makes what you say newsworthy.

Whether you realize it or not, YOU are marketing and promotional tools for your schools. Do you think they pay all that scarce money on varsity sports simply because they want you all to have fun!?

As shitty as it probably feels, you’re all grown-ups now, living in treacherous times. Learn to use your voices, intellects, and hearts now, while you have the time and energy, to call out dangerous bullshit and demand a better world from those with power over your lives.