President Obama held an all- day fundraiser last week that included a fantasy camp and autograph-signing session featuring various NBA players, including our own John Wall.
Former Wizard Etan Thomas was in attendance, and in a column for The Root DC debunked what he says is a perception that professional basketball players aren’t political.
The fact that so many athletes wanted to be involved in President Obama’s reelection campaign runs contrary to the popular image that professional basketball players are apolitical. It’s important to note that every athlete involved in the “Obama Classic” is wealthy enough to be a beneficiary of Romney and Ryan's trickle down economics policies that tend to favor the rich. It would be easy for us to adopt the greed and the “I got mine” mentality that has overtaken many of the people who share our tax bracket.
Thomas also chatted with Wall about his support of the reelection campaign and why he’s not afraid to be public about it.
“I think it's a great cause and for all of us basketball players to come out here and support the President...[it] means a lot. The middle class and lower class he's trying to get better jobs for them. It doesn't all happen in four years. It may take eight years to really get us where we need to go. I honestly don't know why people think athletes are afraid of politics - we're not afraid. It's just that sometimes we want to be careful not to say the wrong thing, but we're definitely not afraid. You see by all of us being involved here today that we aren't afraid.”
If you’re interested in just how involved in politics athletes and team owners are getting, here’s a breakdown of donations as of Aug. 20 to both Obama and Mitt Romney, which shows that ownership largely supports the Republican cause.
HoopsHype has an NBA specific list of donors as of Aug. 22.