If you’ve paid much attention to NBA games as of late, you know one thing for sure: Black Lives Matter.
With large letters labeling the court, it’s hard to miss the message.
Every player, coach and ref takes a knee during the national anthem before the Pelicans-Jazz game pic.twitter.com/LZy1A6s8VM
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 30, 2020
The question is, what is the message?
As I’ve covered previously, there’s the concept and the organization™.
According to BLM™’s website, its mission includes the following:
We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and “villages” that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.
And when it comes to Marxism, they’re for it:
Black Lives Matter movement founder: "We are trained Marxists."pic.twitter.com/bG7QENIM98
— Liz Wheeler (@Liz_Wheeler) June 22, 2020
Unsurprisingly, not everyone’s on board, and you can count SME Steel Contractors among them.
In a September 9th letter to Utah Jazz owner Gail Miller, the Salt Lake County-based company made that clear.
In fact, SME’s giving up its suite at the arena.
And it’s asking the NBA franchise to “put a stop to all disrespectful actions during the Anthem and remove the Black Lives Matter logo from the arena.”
It seems the steel manufacturer believes wokism has ruined sports:
“The recent actions of the NBA—including the owners, coaches and players of the Utah Jazz—have converted a beloved entertainment venue into a forum for dissemination of political propaganda which is divisive and completely out of step with our company and its values.”
For its position, SME General Counsel Mark Wilkey told The Washington Free Beacon it’s gotten major support:
“We have received emails and letters from individuals and companies throughout the country thanking us for standing up for the country, the National Anthem, and the idea that sporting events do not need to be a venue for forcing controversial political views on patrons.”
The league’s certainly taken a bold turn.
The Beacon sums it up:
The NBA centered its July 30 restart around social justice, painting “Black Lives Matter” on its courts and allowing players to wear custom messages on their jerseys, including “Anti-Racist” and “Say Their Names.” Jazz players kneeled during the national anthem before the first game of the restart, prompting a statement of support from the franchise, which stressed its commitment to “advancing social justice.”
As per SME’s letter, the company was “disappointed” when COVID-19 delayed the 2020 season. But that paled compared to “the feelings [they] experienced when NBA games ‘restarted’ on what appears to be a billboard for the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement.”
The company’s detecting some irony:
To say the least, it is ironic that pampered and exceptionally well-paid athletes cavalierly exercise their freedom bought for them through the courage and sacrifice of this nation’s servicemen and women by disrespectfully kneeling during the country’s anthem.
Furthermore, SME says the National Basketball League ignores “true heroes like Chris Kyle and Pat Tillman” while instead promoting “names and tributes for felons.”
And in case you’re wondering how much that sweet suite cost, its 28-year use drew roughly $6 million in ticket fees in addition to food and drink costs of at least $1 million.
SME’s relationship with the Vivint Smart Home Arena runs deep: The company was personally involved in the steel production and erection for the building.
Now, it seems, a glorious partnership’s down the tubes.
And it’s not the only thing — as reported by RedState’s Brandon Morse, Black Lives Matter recently flushed its “What We Believe” page.
Well, at least one organization’s still bold about their beliefs: SME Steel Contractors.
As they say, “Steel don’t bend.”
Find all my RedState work here.
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