When athletes act badly it dominates the news cycle for a minute. Their faces are plastered in the news with repeated the video replay of offense for all the world to see. But when they do something good or speak out on issues they are passionate about, other than sports either we don’t hear a lot about it or they are ridiculed or demonized for their view. As spectators, we love to see their passion and skill on the field, some of us follow their diet and exercise routine and drink the same energy drinks as our favorite athletes. And I remember a time when we expected them to behave as role models for our children – – but bless God that season has passed. We found them to be as flawed as we are.
One player, in particular, Demarco Davis a New Orleans Saints linebacker acted out on his beliefs and campaigned in Louisiana for Amendment 2 to the Louisiana constitution which would scrap the “10-2” verdict requirement that takes only 10 of 12 jurors for a guilty verdict in felony convictions. A law that was passed to ensure guilty verdicts for defendants of color. He believes this is a huge step toward reducing the chances that innocent people are wrongfully convicted and I do too.
Davis said in a statement to USA Today, “In a nation where you’re innocent until proven guilty,” Davis added, “we need to make sure that people are allowed their due process.” And I agree with that too.
Davis actively campaigned for an issue that had bipartisan and demographic support (unbelievable, something we could all agree on) and it passed with overwhelmingly. He didn’t just do a few squats, sit-ups or lunges and wait for someone else to do something. He got up, got out and got involved to push for something he believed in.
Davis is not alone and not the first athletic to use his platform or name recognition to champion a cause he felt strongly about. Muhammed Ali in the ’60s, Billy Jean in the ’70s and Colin Kaepernick today, athletes using their god given abilities and influence to promote change is nothing new. Whether we agree with their cause or not, as an American we should be engaged.
Some of us act out or imitate favorite athlete’s pattern of exercise or dedication in our quest to be the best. As Christians we should do the same, imitating examples of Christian character, innocent until of lifestyle, exercising love and compassion for others not waiting for someone else to do something but be engaged in actively doing the work of the body of Christ from the heart – – getting up, out and involved in the things that matter to God – – The Lost!!!
What did Paul say to the Corinthian Church? Imitate me as I imitate Christ, imitation is still the highest form of a compliment.
SCRIPTURE: 1 Corinthians 11:1