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Up until age 13, I, like millions of other young brothers, thought that I was on a fast track to repeat the doomed lineage of black men who would retire to a jail cell — or else to take solace in the misguidedly celebrated back alleys of ghetto folklore.
But today, some black athletes are changing the narrative to ensure that black women are supported, protected, and empowered.
In recent years, the Lean In campaign has expanded to become one of the many organizations that encourage men in sports to stand next to women in their fight for equality. Steph Curry, of the Golden State Warriors, and Dwyane Wade and LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers have all joined the Lean in Together fight, which commits to the process of opening doors for women.
In the James family, this energy to give back to the community is contagious. His wife Savannah operates the LeBron James Family Foundation College of Education, which helps students from struggling Ohio schools succeed. In 2015, the foundation also spent millions of dollars to send Akron kids to college, providing the support that was sometimes out of reach for their families.
As a kid, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson of the Portland Trail Blazers watched his single mother work as a dietary supervisor and bartender to keep the lights on. He was able to thank his mother for her sacrifices by surprising her with a new home, buying it practically before the ink on his NBA contract dried.
What does it truly mean for black athletes to empower women? To some, it means ensuring their mothers and sisters are removed from environments where they live in fear.
Read the full article about how black athletes are empowering women by Rodney Lucas at GOOD Magazine.