Tony Kemp has been willing to engage in conversation about Black Lives Matter and racial issues. On Friday, the Oakland A’s will join him.
As protests regarding racial inequality and police brutality grip the nation, it is difficult to know where to turn. There are plenty of questions on everyone’s minds, but few places to turn. With that in mind, Tony Kemp decided to use his platform as a professional athlete to start those conversations.
Now, the Oakland A’s are joining in. On Friday, A’s vice president Taj Tashombe will join Kemp on the A’s Instagram channel to discuss racial issues.
The timing of this conversation is also notable. It will take place on June 19, also known as Juneteenth, the date that slavery came to an end in the United States in 1865.
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It is a conversation and a topic that is close to Kemp. He had been the victim of racial profiling himself, having detailed his ordeal when he was pulled over for not coming to a complete stop at a stop sign when he was 17. Fortunately, he was unharmed, but it is still an event that stays in the back of his mind.
And that is why these conversations are so important. Every one of us likely know someone who has been the subject of discrimination and harassment due to their race or sexuality. Yet, this is not a topic of conversation that ever comes up, as it is uncomfortable for everyone involved.
But maybe now, these conversations can happen. Kemp has been doing his part, getting the ball rolling and providing an avenue for people that can use to ask those questions. It is long past time for this to happen, and Kemp is stepping to the forefront in this battle.
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And now, Tony Kemp is not alone. The Oakland A’s are right there with him, adding to the conversation.