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Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork. Lac Edwards Jersey .com) - The line professional athletes have to walk in terms of speaking out on social issues is a murky one. The older generation believes athletes have no business sharing opinions on gay marriage, the civil rights movement or politics in general. Its a valid argument for professional sports men and women are in the frontal lob for their abilities, not their stances. Michael Jordan is the first name that pops to mind on the subject of declining involvement in a worldly issue. In 1990, at the zenith of his fame, Jordan was asked by Harvey Gantt, an African-American Democrat, for an endorsement in his bid to unseat Jesse Helms in the US Senate. Helms was no friend to the black community, but Jordan passed. Jordan reportedly told a friend, Republicans buy sneakers too. Jordan didnt want to alienate a potential consumer at the expense of his political beliefs. Forget, for the moment, that Helms was by almost every account, a racist, Jordan still wouldnt go out on that limb to rebuke him. Tiger Woods rarely speaks on social issues. He was the only African-American player on the PGA Tour, but almost always neglected to voice opinions on any issue. For Woods, the endorsement portion couldve been the root for silence, but that was a shame, too. Golf is whiter than a snowman ghost, so a different perspective was always appreciated, although never materialized. Fast-forward just a few years and todays stars of the NBA have no reservations about speaking out. Thats a pretty big blanket, but leading the charge is LeBron James. On Monday, James and several members of both the Cleveland Cavaliers and Brooklyn Nets wore I Cant Breathe T-shirts during pregame warm-ups. Derrick Rose was the trailblazer for the cause, doing it Saturday night. The shirt is a reference to the death of Eric Garner and the subsequent lack of an indictment for the officer who killed him. James is very aware of his position, not just within league circles, but in this world. When Donald Sterling declared he didnt want black people at his games, James was among the first to say, hes got to go. And what happened on Monday wasnt as much a political statement, well, at least according to James. Ive been quoted over and over about whats going on as far as its more of a notion to the family, more than anything, explained James. Obviously, as a society we have to do better. We have to be better for one another. It doesnt matter what race you are. Its more of a shout out to the family more than anything, because theyre the ones that should be getting all the energy and effort. Even if the shirt meant nothing to the claim that our justice system works differently based on your skin color, James was unafraid. Thats a remarkably fresh way of going about your life, especially one so frequently lived in front of cameras. The timing was perfect, following in Roses footsteps. The Cavs were in Brooklyn, where protests are ongoing. New York is where the Garner incident happened and its the largest media hub in civilization. Also, dont sleep on the fact that Prince William and Kate Middleton were in attendance. That game had a worldwide audience. James screamed from a very large pulpit, unafraid of frosting white people who might want to buy one of his watches you can watch movies on. Jordans statements years ago were those of a coward. He put business over all else and did it in a snarky way. It was a semi-public acknowledgement that his core values had a price tag. Im not advocating all public figures must take stands on social issues. Im suggesting that avoiding that part of your life for a dollar makes you smaller. James makes plenty in endorsements and those deals dont appear to be shrinking based on the relevance of a T-shirt. Woods should probably get more leniency than Jordan. If I can don an elbow- padded blazer and play psychologist, I always felt Woods didnt speak out because he was a relatively conservative man, both politically and literally. He didnt trust the media at all, but also, I think he felt it was just bad form and sometimes, hed give unpopular answers based on his beliefs. Again, all speculation, but it would explain things a little. James isnt burdened with that problem. Hes clear of conscience in voicing his mind. Maybe hes just a different type of person than his predecessors. Or, maybe James is just more comfortable because of exposure. Weve gotten to know James better than we ever knew Jordan. James Twitter presence is massive. His commercials are essentially behind-the-scenes clips of his life. Jordans advertisements lacked anything genuine, which is perfectly acceptable. I still YouTube Be like Mike ads. James has less to hide, not that Jordan, or Tiger do. They are far less trusting. Again, without delving too deeply into the case, it seems logical for basketball players to gravitate to the fight. The association has the most African-American athletes of any sport and race relations are fragile in this country. Its a low-risk fight to get involved in for James, Rose and every other player who donned a shirt. You may not stand on their side, but the majority does. According to a poll conducted by USA Today and the Pew Research Center, 57 percent of Americans supported charges against the police officer in the Garner case. That number is 90 percent among black people polled. Maybe these players dont deserve praise for speaking out on issues. Its entirely possible that years of our biggest sports stars abstaining has made this seem like more of a good deed than it really is. But basketball players can be more vocal without jeopardizing their brand. Everyone knows everyone elses immediate thoughts because of social media. The idea that since theyre athletes theyre less entitled to an opinion is ludicrous and wrong. The only people whose opinions you want to hear are politicians, or pundits? Why do I want to hear what an athlete says? By the rationale that you dont care about athletes opinion because they are athletes, you better feel that way about pharmacists opinions, or line cooks at the diner. Not answering questions about important issues makes you a coward to some extent. A human being with a functioning brain has a take on this situation. I try to kinda distance myself from [social issues], but this is one where I kinda really paid attention and saw what was going on, said Nets guard Deron Williams, a shirt-wearer. I mean, you can see the [Garner] video and you know what happened. Its not one of those things where people are saying this and the cops are saying that. Its there for you to see. Everyone doesnt need to espouse his or his opinion on something. Not giving your opinion because you dont feel yours should be public is rational and valid. Not giving your opinion because you think its bad for your brand is disgraceful. I dont look for a celebrity to help me formulate my opinion on something, although Im sure that happens for some. I look for their opinion to know they arent shying away from giving one. Maybe its not celebratory, but its an improvement from the past. Christian Hackenberg Jersey . The 31-year-old Russian dominated the No. 3-ranked Ferrer throughout, breaking the defending champion and local favourite four times on the indoor hard court. Matt Forte Jersey . -- Mixed martial arts fighter Cristiane Justino Santos has been suspended and fined for testing positive for steroids. http://www.authenticjetsfanatic.com/c-84-jets-kony-ealy-jersey.aspx . -- Ricky Romeros comeback bid hit another road bump Tuesday in an ugly 18-4 Jays loss to a Detroit Tigers split squad.Arcadia, CA - Lexie Lou, last years top Canadian 3-year- old filly, heads a field of eight older females for Saturdays $200,000 La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita. Owned by Gary Barber and trained by Mark Casse, Lexie Lou is the 6-5 morning line favorite and has drawn post 3 in the 1 1/16-mile stakes and will once again be ridden by Corey Nakatani in her seasonal debut. Lexie Lou won last years Queens Plate at Woodbine versus 3-year-old males just three weeks after defeating fellow 3-year-old fillies in the Woodbine Oaks. The filly finished second to California Chrome in the Hollywood Derby on Nov. 29 over Del Mars turf course. The Canadian-bred 4-year-old has won seven of 16 career starts for $1,429,714. Sams Sister is the 2-1 second pick and will start from the immediate inside of Lexie Lou with Elvis Trujillo again riding. The 4-year-old chestnut filly is trained by Jerry Hollendorfer who is also a co-owner. A veteran of five starts, Sams Sister will be making just her third start on dirt in the La Canada. She won the seven-furlong La Brea over Santa Anitas main track on Dec. 26 and now tries two turns for the first time. Shes a very nice horse. I have to thank Mr. Hollendorfer for giving me the opportunity to ride such a nice horse, Trujillo said after winning the La Brea. Sams Sister has banked $307,450 with four wins from her ffive career starts. Mike Pennel Jersey. Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert will saddle Jojo Warrior, the 4-1 third choice, with Martin Garcia riding from post 5. The 4-year-old filly, owned by WinStar Farm and Zayat Stables, is coming off an eighth-place finish in the La Brea. I was surprised at how poorly she ran, Baffert said. She was training great going into it, but you know what? She wasnt effective going one turn last year, and when I finally stretched her out, she was a different filly. Shes been training well for this race, so I think she doesnt want any part of one turn. Thats it. She doesnt want to be rushed. Last August Jojo Warrior won the Torrey Pines Stakes at Del Mar more than two months after claiming the Sunland Oaks. On Sept. 20, after setting the early pace she finished third behind Untapable in Parx Racings Cotillion. Jojo Warrior has won three of eight lifetime starts and $372,231. Here is the complete field for the 41st running of the La Canada in post position order: Fleet of Gold, Alex Solis, 12-1; Sams Sister, Elvis Trujillo, 2-1; Lexie Lou, Corey Nakatani, 6-5; Thegirlinthatsong, Rafael Bejarano, 8-1; Jojo Warrior, Martin Garcia, 4-1; Une Cherise, Joe Talamo, 15-1; Ramonas Wildcat, Kent Desormeaux, 15-1 and Colonel Joan, Gary Stevens, 12-1. Post time for the La Canada will be approximately 7 p.m. ET. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '