Posts tagged with "boycott"

Seton Hall player illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Baseball’s All-Star Game

Majority of Fans Support Removal of Baseball’s All-Star Game from Atlanta, Possible Removal of Super Bowl from Arizona Over Voting Laws

Support for Boycott of Beijing Olympic Games Over Human Rights Issues; Support for Athletes, Leagues, Unions Championing Social Change

By a 55-31 percent margin, a new Seton Hall Sports Poll has found that sports fans across the country support Major League Baseball’s decision to move the All-Star Game out of Atlanta in the wake of Georgia’s new voting laws. Those who call themselves “avid fans” are even more supportive, agreeing with MLB by a 67-25 percent margin. 

The general population was also in support of the move from MLB by a 49-31 percent margin, with 20 percent indicating “don’t know/no opinion.” The “don’t know/no opinion” choice was recited by 14 percent of sports fans and only eight percent of avid fans.

These were the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted April 23-26 geographically spread across the United States using a national representative sample weighted according to gender, age, ethnicity, education, income and geography based on U.S. Census Bureau figures. The Poll had 1,563 adult respondents with a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent. 

Super Bowl Removed from Arizona?

Almost exactly the same level of support was shown for the possibility of moving the 2023 Super Bowl out of Arizona should that state follow Georgia with similar voting law changes. By 55-32 percent (13 percent don’t know/no opinion), sports fans would support moving the game, with avid fans in support of a move by 64-27 percent (9 percent don’t know/no opinion). Among the general public, there is also support for moving the game by 49-30 percent with 21 percent in the “don’t know/no opinion” category.

“When I had the profound pleasure of meeting with Nelson Mandela in 1993 as the Executive Director of the National Basketball Players Association, he encouraged us to use our positions in sport to become agents of change,” said Seton Hall Professor Charles Grantham, director of the Center for Sport Management within the Stillman School of Business. “It is perhaps a long time in coming, but there would seem to be more support than ever for that proposition amongst the leagues, the players and the fans as well as the general public. But so far, the moves are largely symbolic and will require the leagues to utilize their strong political lobby to effectuate legislative and policy change.”

An Olympic Boycott for Beijing Games?

Moving on to the global stage, respondents to the poll were also asked about a possible boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in China, a country often cited for human rights violations. Asked if they would support a boycott of the games, 55 percent of the U.S. general population said yes, with only 23 percent saying no, and 22 percent saying they did not know or held no opinion. Among sports fans, support for a boycott rose to 57 percent vs. 27 percent opposed to a boycott, and among avid fans, 65 percent said yes to a boycott vs. 23 percent saying no. The don’t know/no opinion responses were 16 percent and 12 percent respectively for these self-described fans.

With Allies?

When Americans were asked if they would support an Olympic boycott if multiple countries joined in, the “yes” numbers (in favor) rose to 60 percent for the general population, 62 percent for sports fans and stayed even at 65 percent for avid fans.

Should Athletes Be Able to Participate Independently if Their Countries Boycott the Olympics?

On the question of whether athletes should be able to compete without representing their countries (if their countries were boycotting), the general population said yes by more than a 2 to 1 margin (49-23 percent), with 28 percent registering don’t know/no opinion. Among sports fans, the yes margin was even greater at 54-23 percent (with 23 percent don’t know/no opinion). Support for athletes competing individually rose again among avid fans to 63-23 percent with 14 percent saying don’t know/no opinion.

Should Leagues and Teams Use Their Influence To Affect Social Change?

 Asked whether organizations (sports leagues and teams) should use their influence to affect social change, the general public supported such actions by a 48-36 percent margin with 16 percent answering don’t know/no opinion. The level of support for teams and leagues wielding their influence to affect social change rose to 52 percent for sports fans and 61 percent for avid fans. 

Should Governments Use Sporting Events To Influence or Affect Social Change?

Asked whether governments should use sporting events to affect social change, the general public supported such actions by a 43-38 percent margin with 19 percent answering don’t know/no opinion. The level of support for governments wielding their influence to affect social change through sport rose to 48 percent for sports fans and 61 percent for avid fans. 

Players and Players Associations?

Asked if athletes and/or players associations should use their influence to affect social change – 51 percent of the general population said yes, compared to only 35 percent no and 14 percent who said they did not know or had no opinion. Support for the players’ advocacy rose among sports fans to 55 percent with 34 percent opposing. Among those who describe themselves as “avid fans,” those in favor rose again to 65 percent with opposition declining to 28 percent (11 and seven percent, respectively, saying don’t know/no opinion).

“The question of moving major events in response to legislation or boycotting the Olympics gets to the heart of sports and society, and one influencing the other,” said Grantham. “If the leagues, teams and players continue to wield their economic and political power as agents of change, the potential for real and meaningful impact can be realized.”

Questions and charted breakdowns may be found below; an online version of this release may be found here.

ABOUT THE POLL

The Seton Hall Sports Poll, conducted regularly since 2006, is performed by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. This poll was conducted online by YouGov Plc. using a national representative sample weighted according to gender, age, ethnicity, education, income and geography, based on U.S. Census Bureau figures. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all U.S residents. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls. The Seton Hall Sports Poll has been chosen for inclusion in iPoll by Cornell’s Roper Center for Public Opinion Research and its findings have been published everywhere from USA Today, ESPN, The New York Times, Washington Post, AP, and Reuters to CNBC, NPR, Yahoo Finance, Fox News and many points in between. 

Kaelen Felix Illustrated a Basketball Article for 360 MAGAZINE

Lakers Win 2020 NBA Finals

By Justin Lyons

The Los Angeles Lakers topped the Miami Heat Sunday night by a score of 106 to 93 to win the 2020 NBA Finals.

LeBron James recorded a triple-double, dropping 28 points with 14 rebounds and ten assists, en route to his fourth career NBA title. It is his first with the Lakers, who are now tied with the Boston Celtics for the most championships as a franchise with 17 wins.

Though ratings for NBA Finals games were lower than in previous years, this brings closure to a successfully executed bubble from Commissioner Adam Silver. With players spending months quarantined in Orlando and no fans in attendance, the NBA was still able to complete its season despite a pandemic and a boycott for social justice.

James was awarded the The Bill Russell NBA Finals Most Valuable Player Award for the fourth time in his career, but basketball’s king had some help from his royal attendants. Anthony Davis scored 19 points and had 15 rebounds while the 34-year-old Rajon Rondo had arguably his best game in the bubble making eight of his 11 shots and scoring 19 points.

This obviously strengthens James’ argument as the greatest basketball player in history. Michael Jordan won six NBA titles and six NBA Finals MVP Awards, but with James on the books for two more years with the Lakers and Davis for another year and potentially more, the Lakers will look to compete in and lengthen the “LeBron James era.”

While accepting the Finals MVP Award, James said, “We just want our respect. Rob wants his respect. Coach Vogel wants his respect. Our organization wants their respect. Laker Nation wants their respect. And I want my damn respect, too.”

Well, if the perspective of fans and journalists means anything to James, it seems as though levels of respect towards him rose last night.

James hugged Davis while holding the MVP trophy and thanked Davis in his speech.

James called working with Davis “easy,” saying, “We want the best from each other every single day, both on and off the floor. To be able to put him where he is today, that means so much to me, and the fact that he trusts me means even more.”

Finally, he spoke about the NBA’s impact on social change while in the bubble.

“You hear Golden State always use the phrase ‘strength in numbers,’ and that’s exactly what it was. As the NBA, the NBPA, all of our players, everybody had a voice on what’s going on in America. We know we all want to see better days, and when we leave here we know we’ve got to continue to push that,” James said.

The loss in the finals comes in heart-breaking fashion for the Miami Heat, as three of their stars played most of the series at less than full health. Jimmy Butler, Goran Dragic and Bam Adebayo all faced injuries at some point in the Finals.

There are positives for the Heat, as Butler cemented himself as a player teams vying for a championship will want. Luckily for the Heat, Butler has three more years left in his deal with Miami.

20-year-old rookie Tyler Herro also garnered national attention with his offensive ability. He put an exclamation point on his playoff performance with 37 points in the fourth game of the Eastern Conference Finals.

There is no official opening date scheduled for the next basketball season, but Adam Silver said it is likely to begin in 2021.

Boycotting Xinjiang Cotton – No Easy Feat

The United States is moving forward with legislation that would effectively ban cotton imports from China’s Xinjiang province over potential links to forced labour – but such a step would be a massive challenge for the apparel industry, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company. 

The Uygur Forced Labour Prevention Act shifts the goalposts on forced labour by requiring importers to prove any products made in, or containing inputs from, the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) were not produced using forced labour.

Leonie Barrie, Apparel Analyst at GlobalData, says, “Forced labour in any form is unacceptable, and US lawmakers clearly believe an all-out bar is the best way to tackle the problem, as well as sending an important message to Beijing over its policies in the region. Yet, it would be hugely difficult for the apparel sector to enforce due to the sheer scale and complexity of its supply chains.

“As many as one in five cotton garments sold globally is likely to contain cotton or yarn from Xinjiang, often mixed with cotton from other sources and used by garment makers around the world,” Barrie went on to say. “So even if brands have no direct relationships with Xinjiang suppliers, it’s almost impossible to establish whether the cotton in their clothes is tainted by Uyghur forced labour in China.”

Difficulties in accessing the region and speaking openly with workers mean third-party supply chain audits are not an option. Although new tools are being developed to provide greater transparency and traceability from cotton field to consumer – including the use of forensic science and DNA tagging – they can only confirm if the cotton in a product comes from a known source. There are as yet no accurate tests to specifically identify or eliminate Xinjiang cotton. 

“Trying to shift production out of China is yet another challenge,” Barrie added. “Not only do global supply chains depend so heavily on Chinese materials, but nowhere else can match the country’s skills, quality, product variety, factory capacity, and range of products from raw materials to final garment.

“The next step for the Uygur Forced Labour Prevention Act is a Senate vote, but if it’s derailed by the upcoming November elections it will have to be reintroduced next year. Either way, the Xinjiang issue is not going to go away, so brands and retailers must brace for more scrutiny of their supply chains.”

About GlobalData

4,000 of the world’s largest companies, including over 70% of FTSE 100 and 60% of Fortune 100 companies, make more timely and better business decisions thanks to GlobalData’s unique data, expert analysis and innovative solutions, all in one platform. GlobalData’s mission is to help our clients decode the future to be more successful and innovative across a range of industries, including the healthcare, consumer, retail, financial, technology and professional services sectors.

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Rita Azar Illustrates a Basketball Article for 360 MAGAZINE

Jaylen Brown x George Floyd Bill

by Justin Lyons

Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics wing, in a press conference Sunday said he would like to see the city of Boston pass the George Floyd bill.

Brown, who has been one of the more active players in social justice conversations throughout the NBA, was asked about the Celtics’ commitment to spend $25 million over the next ten years to fight social injustice.

He said it was a great step, and that change happens over a period of time, but he thinks there are things that can be catalysts for change right now.

“One thing I would like to see in Boston is the George Floyd bill enacted,” Brown said, adding that conversations need to be had about police and qualified immunity. “Some things just need to be held accountable, and hopefully Boston can be a place where a tone is set that can be transpired in other cities.”

Brown went on to say that he thinks Boston is moving in the right direction, but he would still like to see more companies and organizations be diversified as well as more opportunities for people of color.

“I’m proud to be a part of the Celtics organization. I’m proud to have an ownership group, or a leadership group, that’s willing to take these steps because they recognize that we need to live in a better, more forward progressing world.”

The George Floyd bill, or H.R.7120, aims to achieve a few goals.

First, it would lower the criminal intent standard to convict an officer of law enforcement. The standard currently requires that officers act willfully, while H.R.7120 would only necessitate that officers act knowingly or recklessly.

Second, it would limit qualified immunity, which grants officers immunity in lawsuits regarding violations of constitutional rights of civilians.

Third, it would allow the Department of Justice to issue authorizations to investigate departments demonstrating patterns of discriminatory practices.

It would also create a national registry of police misconduct, lay the bricks for prohibition of racial profiling and implement new standards for training regarding racial profiling and use of body cameras.

It passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 236-181, and it will move to the Senate.

Brown’s comments come just weeks after NBA players boycotted games on behalf of Jacob Blake, whom was shot seven times by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and victims of police brutality everywhere.

A reporter asked Brown if he thought the boycott’s message was still effective even as players returned to the court.

“These issues have been here for a very, very long time, and they’re still going to be here regardless of if we protest or not or boycott or not. I think sports plays a huge role in society, and I’m very aware of that, so using our platform is something I’m always going to support,” Brown answered.

While he said the cure for racism might not come from the NBA, the players can always use their platform to let the world know that these issues are important.

Brown, who wears the word “Liberation” on the back of his jersey, scored 21 points and picked up eight rebounds to help the Celtics defeat the Toronto Raptors Friday by a score of 92-87. They advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals where they will meet up with the Miami Heat, who are playing on six days of rest after eliminating the Milwaukee Bucks in just five games.

The first game of the series begins Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. EST with the Celtics favored by a point and a half.

Rita Azar illustrates NBA basketball story for 360 MAGAZINE.

NBA Protests

by Justin Lyons

The clock struck 4:05 p.m. on Aug 26 in Orlando, and neither the Magic nor the Bucks were on the court for the tip-off of the fifth game of their playoff series.

Playing their home games just 40 miles from Kenosha, Wisconsin, it’s safe to say that the shooting of Jacob Blake by Kenosha police literally hit close to home for the Bucks players.

The Orlando Magic originally took the court for their game, but they decided to leave when it appeared the Bucks weren’t coming. That court was now empty aside from the NBA logos, the regulation markings and “Black Lives Matter” in bold text across the side closest to the scorer’s table.

Then, the tweet from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski came at 4:13 p.m. Orlando time saying that the Bucks officially decided to boycott the fifth game of the series.

News broke later that the Rockets, Thunder, Trail Blazers and Lakers all decided to boycott their games, as well, in a show of unity.

It was the spark that started the fire, as basketball wouldn’t be played again until Aug. 29.

Bucks guard George Hill was one of the most outspoken players on the team regarding the shooting of Jacob Blake, making it very clear that he couldn’t continue to play basketball to distract from the reality of what’s happening in the United States.

The Brewers, the Milwaukee baseball team that plays its home games just a short drive from where the Bucks play, also decided to cancel their Aug. 26 game against the Reds.

Brewers star Christian Yelich said it was a unanimous decision from the team to not play.

“I think the Bucks spearheaded it for us,” Yelich said. “They started the discussion. It gave us a conversation to have. It was eye-opening for us, and we felt like it was the right thing to do.”

The NHL also joined in the protests, postponing games Aug. 27 and Aug. 28.

Later on the night of Aug. 26, Shams Charania reported via Twitter that the Lakers and Clippers, both of which are still contenders for the title, voted to boycott the rest of the season. LeBron James reportedly led the movement to cancel the season, which is no surprise given his history of fighting for social justice.

Giannis Antetokounmpo said the Bucks were able to get in contact with Blake’s father very quickly. Blake’s father was moved to tears by the gesture.

According to an article from ESPN, Antetokounmpo said, “Obviously, it’s gonna be games that you come in and score 30, 35, 50 or whatever the case might be, but that you’re going to remember. The way we felt, we’re going to remember the way we felt for the rest of our lives.”

The Bucks were eliminated from the playoffs Tuesday, which begs the question of how they will respond. Hill expressed disappointment that he had to be in the Orlando bubble instead of fighting for justice, so it should be interesting to see where the Bucks go from here.

Eyes are also shifting to the NFL, which starts Thursday. The entire nation will have its eyes on protests and social justice initiatives from a league that has been just as outspoken as the NBA.

Mulan illustration by Maria Soloman for 360 Magazine.

Mulan Boycott

by Justin Lyons

A new movement is taking over social media as pro-democracy activists try to spread a boycott of the new Disney film Mulan.

Disney’s live-action remake of the 1998 original film hit Disney’s streaming service Disney+ this weekend. On top of the monthly subscription fee, those wanting to see Mulan would have to pay $29.99 to unlock it.

Social media users in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand called for movie fans and Disney lovers to avoid the new film because of comments from Liu Yifei, who plays the titular Mulan.

In Aug. 2019, Liu expressed via Weibo, a Chinese social media site, that she supported Hong Kong police. The comments came amid pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong.

Liu was met with instant backlash, but now that her movie is available to stream, the widespread boycott seems to have intensified.

Joshua Wong, a Hong Kong activist, has been particularly outspoken regarding the situation. He asked everyone who believes in human rights to boycott the film.

He also retweeted multiple tweets from other activists. One of which was from Twitter user Gwyneth Kwai-lam Ho, who linked a story about the boycott from The Guardian.

“Not while the true Mulans are suffering in the darkness of a Chinese jail,” the tweet said.

Mulan currently sits at 78% on Rotten Tomatoes among critics but 55% among audience members. It had a production budget of $200 million.

Positive Goya Illustration

Goya Boycott

By Eamonn Burke

A boycott of Goya foods, a major producer of beans and an essential good for many families, has launched after its CEO Robert Unanue praised President Trump in a speech at the White House on Thursday:

“We are all truly blessed … to have a leader like President Trump who is a builder,” said Unanue.

Immediately, many prominent Hispanic figures such as Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez denounced Goya and Unanue, and hinted in a tweet she would boycott the company. Julian Castro, a former Housing and Urban Development Secretary, urged people do to the same despite the prominence of Goya in Latin American homes. The resistance comes from the public as well, as the hashtags #boycottGoya and #Goyaway have trended in recent days. Meanwhile, President Trump took to Twitter saying “I LOVE @GoyaFoods!”

Unanue, however, is not apologizing for endorsing Trump and is labeling the boycott as a “suppression of speech”. He was proud to support Trump, and also to say that Goya would be donating 2 million cans of food to American Food Banks. He also stated that he would be “honored” to be a part of the Hispanic Property Initiative, which was signed by Trump at the event with a goal of expanding “access by Hispanic Americans to educational and economic opportunities.” The CEO also has a extensive history of donating to Republican candidates and initiatives.

“If you’re called by the president of the United States, you’re going to say, ‘No I’m sorry, I’m busy, no thank you?’ I didn’t say that to the Obamas and I didn’t say that to President Trump.” said Unanue in an interview with Fox News on Friday. Republicans like Ted Cruz and Matt Schlapp and publicly defended the CEO while denouncing “cancel culture” on Twitter.

The unwavering support of Unanue is perplexing, when considering Trump’s history against Latinx people. In 2016, his presidential campaign was largely structured on restricting immigrants, especially from Mexico. In one speech he referred to the people coming from Mexico into the U.S. as “rapists.” He has relentlessly tried to end DACA, a program which protects immigrants, and offered little support to Puerto Rico in the midst of hurricane devastation. The Trump administration works closely with ICE and has detained immigrants at the US-Mexico border in concentration camps with inhuman men conditions.

It is also confusing when considering Goya’s history as a company. Goya is currently the largest Hispanic-owned company in the nation, but it began as a small store in Manhattan run by Spanish immigrants

As for President Trump, who is already unpopular with Hispanic voters, it is possible that he sees a reduction in the 26% of Latinx voters who support him.

Facebook Ad Boycott

By Eamonn Burke

The social media platform Facebook is making policy changes after Unilever has removed ads from the site, as well as Twitter. They join a group of corporations such as Honda, Verizon, Ford, Clorox, and Denny’s, who have come together to boycott the site, as called for by the NAACP and the Anti-Defamation League as a way to pressure tech conglomerates to make change. Some companies are pulling ads indefinitely, and some have pledged to pull them for the month of July.

These new policies involve designating posts that are in violation of existing policies but still “newsworthy”. Twitter has already adopted this method, allowing them to label some of President Trump’s tweets as violations. Facebook claims that it allocates a large budget to keeping content safe and removing hate speech using AI that is 90% effective, and also that the company never makes policy changes based on money. However, a group called Stop Hate For Profit, who called for the boycott, want to see more change:

“We have been down this road before with Facebook. They have made apologies in the past. They have taken meager steps after each catastrophe where their platform played a part. But this has to end now.”

Unilever supplied upwards of $42 million dollars of revenue for Facebook in 2019, so it is no doubt that their absence will be damaging. Facebook is also a huge source of profit for the companies themselves, so it is an impactful decision to stopping putting ads on the site. Shares of Facebook and Twitter have already gone down more than 7% as of Friday. Other massive companies like Procter and Gamble have pledged to do the same in the face of discriminatory content.

Justice illustration

Supreme Court Reform

Police violence against blacks won’t end until the U.S. Supreme Court adopts a substantially different approach to the issue, says a Virginia Tech expert on race and social policy. “The bottom line is that better or different police training will not end this violence because it does nothing to limit the police’s power to do violence,” said Wornie Reed. “Police have a license to kill anyone, and they use it disproportionately on black people.” Reed says law enforcement received this “license” in the Graham v. Conner Supreme Court decision in 1989, written by Chief Justice William Rehnquist. The Graham decision in 1989 interpreted the Fourth Amendment to protect police officers, not black people, Reed said. “It in effect changed the view of the police use of force from that of an individual encountering a state action that could potentially be a violation of the person’s constitutional rights under the Fourth Amendment to that of the police officer’s right, the right to act—and use force–if they feel it is reasonable,” says Reed. “If the intended situation is to place the police officer’s life equal to that of the civilian, we need to make these rules clear and havepolice practices conform. If the intent is to value the police officer’s life as more significant, we need to debate this issue in public and the courts. A large proportion of the citizenry might object to that orientation as a cultural practice.” Professor Wornie Reed, Blacksburg Police Chief Anthony Wilson and other local leaders and officials will talk about these issues at a news conference at noon on Tuesday, June 2, at the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office in Christiansburg, Virginia.

About Wornie Reed

Wornie Reed is the director of the Race and Social Policy Research Center and a professor of Africana Studies and sociology in Virginia Tech’s College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences. His areas of expertise include race, ethnic health disparities, social policy and criminal justice. Reed also has several connections to the civil rights movement: he marched alongside Martin Luther King Jr. and saw over 30 of his speeches; he attended King’s funeral in Atlanta and marched in Memphis; he participated in the Poor People’s’ Campaign, the 1963 March on Washington and the Montgomery Bus Boycott; He also participated with the Olympic Committee for Human Rights which sponsored the Black Power salute boycott.

Reed’s expertise has been featured in TIME, HuffPost, WSLS (Virginia CBS affiliate), WVTF(Virginia NPR affiliate), Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder, and the Philadelphia Tribune, to name a few.