Those are the words Minnesota Lynx Kayla Alexander shared on racism and George Floyd's death. Kia Nurse of New York Liberty said that for people to grow and learn they "need to learn to be comfortable being uncomfortable." With the absence of sports and life being changed for millions due to COVID-19, this shockwave of protests in the wake of George Floyd's death feels more powerful than ever and Canadian WNBA players lean on education.
AllRaptors Aaron rose speaks on his interviews with 3 WNBA players, Kayla Alexander, Kia Nurse and Natalie Achonwa.
Read the full transcript below:
Kaitlin O'Toole: Joining me now from AllRaptor's is Aaron Rose. Aaron, Kayla is just one of the many Canadian WNBA players that you've spoken to over the last week and a half. What have you learned from your conversations with them and how are they feeling during this time?
Aaron Rose: I think the past few weeks have been tough for them. Not only are they not playing basketball because of the coronavirus, but they've seen the world react to the death of George Floyd. From speaking to these women, they see it as a black man being killed by police brutality, and when they see that happen, they see their fathers, their husbands, their boyfriends, the black men in their community. Natalie Achonwa [Indiana Fever] told me that keeps her up at night. She feels for the men in her life and she fears for them. I think what I've learned is that this is a serious problem, but I think there is some optimism that maybe these protests have made the world realize what's going on and "enough is enough." People can become allies and start to educate themselves on what's going on. All three of these women told me that education is key and it's a privilege that you can learn about racism rather than experience it. Kia Nurse [New York Liberty] told me that "people need to learn to be comfortable being uncomfortable" and hopefully 2020 has taught people that they need to learn how to be uncomfortable and they need to use their voice to educate people. That they need to not be complicit, and when they hear racism in their community, they need to silence that and educate people on how to stop being racist. Whether that means telling people to stop. Whether that's your friends, your colleagues, your family members. It's important for everyone to speak out when there is racism in our communities.
Kaitlin O'Toole: Absolutely. Great advice from these women. Thank you so much for your insight on this, Aaron. I appreciate it.