The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has asked professional athletes to avoid the state of Texas due to recent legislation on voting rights and reproductive care.
In a letter to every professional sports players' association in the country, the association said it urges "free agents to reconsider moving their families to a state that is not safe for anyone." The open letter was signed by NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson and NAACP Texas President Gary Bledsoe.
If you are a woman, avoid Texas. If you are Black, avoid Texas. If you want to lower your chances of dying from coronavirus, avoid Texas.
The letter begins by appealing to athletes' influential platforms and to their roles as parents, stating that the State of Texas is a blueprint for legislators that aim to violate constitutional rights for all.
"As we watch an incomprehensible assault on basic human rights unfold in Texas, we are simultaneously witnessing a threat to constitutional guarantees for women, children and marginalized communities," said the letter.
We are asking that you seek employment with sports teams located in states that will protect, honor and serve your families with integrity.
The letter addresses the recent legislation signed into law by Gov. Abbott regarding abortion and redistricting maps. The letter also mentioned recent lawsuits from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton that sue school districts for having a mask mandate in effect.
"When all else fails, we must look within and answer the call to protect the basic human rights and democratic values which are fundamental to this country" said Derrick Johnson, President and CEO, NAACP. "Professional athletes serve as some of our country's greatest role models and we need them to join us to fight for democracy."