Former U.S. Senator Kelly Loeffler recently lost her bid in a runoff with Rev. Raphael Warnock to keep her seat appointed by the governor of Georgia Governor Brian Kemp. A wealthy woman with a background in finance, she also co-owns the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream. Like many super-rich owners, Loeffler’s adamant support of Trumpism was out of step with her players.
Loeffler slams BLM movement
The schism was further highlighted when she wrote a letter to the WNBA’s President, complaining about the league’s endorsement of Black Lives Matter:
“I adamantly oppose the Black Lives Matter political movement, which has advocated for the defunding of police, called for the removal of Jesus from churches and the disruption of the nuclear family structure, harbored anti-Semitic views, and promoted violence and destruction across the country.” Loeffler added, that highlighting one “particular political agenda undermines the potential of the sport and sends a message of exclusion.”
The team responds
The players rebelled against the team owner, actively endorsing Warnock, an African-American minister at the same church where Dr. Martin Luther King often preached.
The team’s actions are another in a long line of activist actions taken by high profile athletes trying to move the needle in different communities across America. The Dream cannot take all the credit for Warnock’s win — former gubernatorial candidate and voter registration superpower Stacey Abrams was crucial in mobilizing enough voters for the Democrats to win both of Georgia’s U.S. Senate seats.
Nevertheless, it should be noted that the team endorsed Warnock (even posting photos of the team wearing t-shirts that said “Vote Warnock”) when he was polling at just 9%. By the time the team eventually congratulated him for his victory, he beat Loeffler with 50.8% of the runoff total. Many recognize that Abrams, the founders of the Black Lives Matter movement and other black women are becoming major forces in politics and social justice, and it is safe to say that the Dream is helping to lead the way.