Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

The WNBA Has a Privileged White Woman Problem and Her Name Is Kelly Loeffler

If Kelly Loeffler were anything other than a white woman, she’d be gone as a WNBA team owner by now.
If Kelly Loeffler were anything other than a white woman, she’d be gone as a WNBA team owner by now.
Image: (AP)

If Kelly Loeffler were a white man, she would have already been banned from the WNBA.

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If Kelly Loeffler were a Black man, this situation would have already been handled.

And If Kelly Loeffler were a Black woman, this issue wouldn’t even exist. Because this is a country that makes it nearly impossible for Black women to become team owners.

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But due to the combination of Loeffler’s race and gender, she’s still being allowed to wake up every morning to be her best racist and unethical self. Loeffler is what happens when you give a “Karen” political power and financial freedom.

The Republican Senator from Georgia and part-owner of the Atlanta Dream, was part of a Senate Ethics Committee investigation earlier this year for alleged insider trading after she sold stock before the coronavirus pandemic crashed markets.

But right now, Loeffler is in the news because she hates Black people.

As a proud supporter of the Second Amendment, she’s co-sponsored three bills aimed at safeguarding gun owners’ rights. But, just last month, she described legally-armed Black people, in an open-carry state, as a “mob rule.” She’s also doubled down on her disapproval of the Black Lives Matter Movement and its place in sports and the WNBA.

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“What I see is politics coming into sports,” she recently said. “No one has asked politics to come into sports. Sports are about unifying people. People from all walks of life from all political views should be welcomed in sports and to cancel someone because they want to protect innocent life; because they are fighting for the unborn; because they support the Second Amendment; because I support the constitutional rights that have been given to us by God? Why would that not fit as part of American sports culture? That should be a tenet of sports, is to welcome all views.”

Loeffler is one of those white women that refuses to think of anyone other than herself. Because only a person like that could buy into a team that’s in the “Black Mecca” and plays in a league in which roughly 80 percent of its players are Black. Women like Loeffler love making money off, and being entertained by, Black people. But, as you can see, their Black lives mean nothing to her.

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And as far as the belief that “no one has asked politics to come into sports,” she’s the one that became a sports owner, and then a politician. Some will say that her privilege blinds her from her hypocrisy. But that would be letting her off the hook. Loeffler isn’t stupid, or dumb. She knows exactly what she’s doing. She just doesn’t care. And that’s what makes “Karens” like her and Laura Ingraham so dangerous. They tell Black athletes to “shut up and dribble,” or to keep politics and sports separate when they’re the ones constantly fusing them together for their own political purposes.

But even though the WNBA and Loeffler’s own team have released statements about her and in support of Black Lives Matter, the thing she doesn’t realize is that she’s now in a fight against other women, which are Black women. Because far too often, white women like Loeffler see feminism or “girl power” as advocacy that should only be concerned with women that think, operate, and look like her.

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On top of taking on Black women in a Black league, Loeffler will face Black women, and men, in a race for her seat in November. This feels like it won’t bode well for her, especially when you realize that in 2018, 92 percent of Black women that went to the polls voted Democratic. In 2016, that number was 94 percent. In 2014, it was 91 percent.

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Not only is Loeffler on the wrong side of history, but she also has a great chance of being on the wrong side of election results in a few months. But before Election Day, or the restart of the WNBA’s season, WNBA commissioner Cathy Englebert and the Atlanta Dream have to find a way to remove Loeffler from the league. She has to go, and the precedent was set when Adam Silver banned Donald Sterling from the NBA in 2014.

Because if this moment of “national awakening” and “convenient consciousness” is going to lead to actual equality, then that means that Kelly Loeffler should be shown the door, which are the consequences that a white man or Black person would suffer under the same circumstances.

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But if that doesn’t happen, the WNBA will have failed its players and be viewed as any other corporate workplace. One in which “Karens” far too often have the immunity to be themselves at all times without consequence.

Saginaw Native. Morehouse Man. Syracuse (Newhouse) Alum. 2019 NABJ Award Winner. 2016 PABJ Journalist of the Year. I only eat my wings lemon-peppered. And I like brown liquor & brown women.

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