Kenny Smith Asks NBA Stars to Invest In Communities
While Charles Barkley blames Black folks for being the reason “why there’s racial stereotypes” in America, his TNT co-host Kenny Smith is calling on Black NBA players to invest in Black communities.
“I challenge each guy to allocate 10 percent of their salary to the communities that they’ve come from. Ten percent. Think of the agent. Ten percent and this dude just makes a phone call,” Smith said during a speech he called “The Sate of the Union.”
Smith mentioned a recent change by the NBA to increase the salary cap to $90 million per team, which overwhelmingly affects Black ballplayers who make up 74 percent of the league.
“Six percent of the country make up 74 percent of the NBA,” Smith said during his speech.
“Seventy-four percent has an availability of $90 million per team. There comes a social, economic responsibility with that, and I am sorry, it has to be you,” he told players.
Smith challenged Black NBA players to invest into their hometown to help those who’ve been left behind.
“So now you can make a social-economic impact,” he added. “Which creates empowerment and creates education and opportunities that allow you to skip past all of the things that go on for a big group. I think that’s the responsibility.”
Smith isn’t the only one calling on NBA players to step up. Carmelo Anthony recently called on his peers to do more to advocate for justice and equality for Black folks.
“I’m calling for all my fellow ATHLETES to step up and take charge. Go to your local officials, leaders, congressman, assemblymen/assemblywoman and demand change,” Anthony said in a recent Instagram post. “There’s NO more sitting back and being afraid of tackling and addressing political issues anymore. Those days are long gone. We have to step up and take charge. We can’t worry about what endorsements we gonna lose or whose going to look at us crazy. I need your voices to be heard. We can demand change.”