Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has joined Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James in LBJ's newest project: More Than A Vote.
The phrase "change isn't made by watching from the sidelines" headlines the More Than a Vote website and led off Mahomes' tweet confirming his involvement in James' project.
James united with other prominent athletes and entertainers to launch the group, focusing on bringing Black voices and votes to the United States' elections. James has previously spoken out about systemic issues in America's voting systems.
Mahomes' involvement with James' group comes after pledging, along with Tyrann Mathieu and the Chiefs, to begin a voter registration and involvement project in Kansas City.
Mahomes was asked how he and Mathieu decided that voting rights and registration should be the next step in their plans to use their platforms for social change.
“I think it came from talking and listening to teammates and people throughout our organization,” Mahomes said. “Obviously, with voting coming up for local offices and everything like that, we wanted to make sure that was in the front of our minds.”
While noting that the Chiefs' plan was not yet set in stone, Mahomes continued to explain how he and the Chiefs planned to take their next step.
“We’ve had initial talks with Clark and we’ve talked with [Chiefs President] Mark Donovan and we’ve set up a meeting for next week with our committee, with a lot of the players that are kind of leaders on our team, and we’re going to try to find the best way to give money or support or whatever it is to get as many people registered to vote so they can go and try to affect change in every way they feel possible,” Mahomes said.
Sports Illustrated's Lakers site, AllLakers, notes that activism on this front is nothing new to James:
“Yes, we want you to go out and vote, but we’re also going to give you the tutorial,” James told the New York Times. “We’re going to give you the background of how to vote and what they’re trying to do, the other side, to stop you from voting.”
James has long used his fame call out racial and societal ills. In 2012, he helped spearhead his then-Miami Heat to wear hoodies in honor of Trayvon Martin, who was killed by George Zimmerman. In 2014, he wore a T-shirt that said "I can't breathe," which were Eric Garner's final words before he died after being placed in a chokehold by a police officer in New York.
James also spoke out against the deaths of Michael Brown, Aavielle Wakefield and Ahmaud Arbery.