WNBA Rookie Satou Sabally on Why She Joined the Social Justice Council

by Yah Yah
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WNBA rookie Satou Sabally is experiencing firsthand how impactful sports can be in the fight for social justice.

In a recent interview with The Undefeated, Sabally opened up about what compelled her to join the league’s Social Justice Council.

“While we were playing, people in Seattle were protesting, and it looked like a war zone. All the pictures that I saw I was like, ‘OK, I at least have to do something.’ So it makes me really proud that I’m part of the social justice council,” she shared.

“And being in there, I’m really in a position to learn. I’m watching a lot, I’m listening. And it’s obviously weird because I have a lot going on. But even at Oregon, I’ve always done both and it’s good for me to just continue it and keep using my brain and the things that I’m interested in, and things that affect everyone.”

Last month, the league announced a new platform, The Justice Movement, and the WNBA/WNBPA Social Justice Council’s creation to help advance social justice.

“As many WNBA players — past and present — have said and, more importantly, consistently demonstrated, the reason why you see us engaging and leading the charge when it comes to social advocacy is because it is in our DNA,” WNBPA President Nneka Ogwumike said in a statement. “With 140-plus voices all together for the first time ever, we can be a powerful force connecting to our sisters across the country and in other parts of the world. And may we all recognize that the league’s stated commitment to us — in this season and beyond — offers a pivotal moment in sports history.”

The Social Justice Council will be “a driving force of necessary and continuing conversations about race, voting rights, LGBTQ+ advocacy, and gun control amongst other important societal issues.”

Sabally relishes the ability to be able to organize initiatives and be able to get access to information and resources to help inspire change. The Dallas Wings rookie also asserts that a meeting with Breonna Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, bolstered her mission to precipitate change.

“It really gave me hope and it gave me motivation. She’s a strong individual that has been pushed to the spotlight without her wanting to be in that spotlight. And she was a human first. A lot of people always forget that these are humans that we’re talking about, and they just see the people. You see Breonna Taylor’s face everywhere, but you forget she had a mother, she had a sister, she had this whole family that is hurting, still, because there’s still no justice,” she explained.

“The cops are still outside, free, living their normal lives, and they killed someone. They’re responsible for a murder. Just being able to see that she’s a human and the realness of it really just made me even more emotional, and more eager to do more.”

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