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Count Naomi Osaka among the athletes who have no interest in sticking to sports. Osaka called out people who demand athletes only entertain, explaining some issues are human rights issues.
Osaka, 22, has been outspoken following the death of George Floyd. She’s tweeted or retweeted support for protestors, called out systemic racism and highlighted instances of police brutality. She’s also shared a few messages from critics who think she should focus on tennis.
Osaka explained why she’s not going to do that.
I hate when random people say athletes shouldn’t get involved with politics and just entertain. Firstly, this is a human rights issue. Secondly, what gives you more right to speak than me? By that logic if you work at IKEA you are only allowed to talk about the “GRÖNLID” 🤷🏽♀️?
— NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ (@naomiosaka) June 4, 2020
As Osaka said, many of the issues she’s addressed are human rights issues. On top of that, she pointed out that people who work other jobs aren’t limited in what they can speak on. Osaka used the example of someone working at an IKEA store. She asked whether IKEA employees are only allowed to talk about the GRÖNLID (a type of sofa sold at IKEA).
Osaka was one of the many athletes to call out Fox News’ Laura Ingraham for her comments about Drew Brees. Ingraham defended Brees’ ability to speak out about NFL players kneeling. In 2018, Ingraham criticized LeBron James for mixing sports and politics, telling him to “shut up and dribble.”
Osaka is not the only tennis player to speak out on Floyd’s death, racial injustice and police brutality. Coco Gauff, 16, addressed spectators at a protest in Delray on Wednesday.
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