Brittney Griner Needs To Come Home Now

I’ve gone back and forth about whether to address this or not. I really don’t have much else to contribute to the topic besides the obligatory “BG should be with her family.” Facing 10 years in a Russian prison over a couple of vape pen cartridges is foolishness of the highest order. All that is obvious though. And apparently, unlike everyone on social media, I am not a political strategist, I don’t have a cousin that works at the Pentagon and I don’t have access to highly classified information regarding this situation so I can’t provide any in-depth, detailed breakdown of why Griner is still a prisoner on foreign soil. All I have to offer is rage, sadness, concern, and frustration. But nevertheless, I feel like somewhere between Woodward and Bernstein and “Vladimir Putin is a bitch ass nigga.”, there is an important discussion to be had here. So let’s have it.

As I previously stated, my sentiments toward this ordeal begin and end at “Let’s get BG home as soon as possible.” And again, I don’t know what all goes into that and frankly, I don’t care. It just needs to happen. But what I can guarantee is not enough is being done to procure her release. Do you want to know how I know not enough is being done? Because honestly, Brittney belongs to pretty much every group that our country has proven time and again that they care nothing about. She’s Black, a woman, and a member of the LBGTQIA+ community. If we’re going to be truthful though, I could have just stopped at the first descriptor. As a Black person, the only time the US will exercise the law to its fullest extent will be to punish you. And securing a Black person’s freedom goes against everything this country has stood for since its inception. Having BG’s life hanging in the balance of political games and the general apathy toward Black life is undoubtedly nerve-wracking for her family and loved ones.

And in case you haven’t been paying attention, I’m definitely about to hit you with the Jake Brigance “Now imagine she’s white” speech right goddamn now. I know it’s been mentioned repeatedly but guess what, I’m mentioning it again. And as uncomfortable as it may be for some to hear if that’s Sue Bird in that situation, we’re most likely not even talking about this right now. That’s no disrespect to Sue because if it were her, I’d also want her home immediately. Now for the “Why do you have to make everything about race?” crowd, for someone to even ask that question while living in a country that was built on the institution of slavery is just about as asinine and tone-deaf as it gets. Racism casts an ugly shadow over practically every aspect of life here. If you have an issue with that, trust me, I’m not the one that can help you with that. It’s unfortunate that this is even part of the equation but it’s our reality. In this instance, it is an integral part of the conversation. The fact that Brittney Griner’s safe and swift return doesn’t seem to be a priority for the U.S. government forces us to ask if that would still be the case if she were of a different complexion. But alas, that’s not my problem. Racism is an issue of white creation. Y’all go ahead and fix that.

Before I get outta here, let me spin the block on “Vladimir Putin is a bitch ass nigga.” The resumé speaks for itself. The statement doesn’t require an explanation. But just looking at this ordeal from an objective standpoint, he’s just straight-up toying with someone’s life. Let’s look at what we’re working with here. The Russian government is planning to convict a woman for the large-scale transportation of drugs, which is laughable considering the amount. Also, it has to be taken into account that Griner has been playing professionally in Russia since 2014. So there are only a few likely scenarios, either she wasn’t aware of the law, or she was aware and had been participating in the so-called large-scale transportation of drugs for 8 years with no problems or she was targeted on her most recent trip which landed her in the predicament she’s in now. And I see you “She shouldn’t have broken the law” dummies. Since you’re ignorant enough to say something like that, I’m sure you’re too ignorant to realize the status of professional women’s basketball players overseas. Here’s some context. The team Griner plays for in Russia is the same team that paid Diana Taurasi $1.5 million to sit out the 2015 WNBA season. These women are treated like royalty across the water. BG has been one of the best players on one of the best teams in Russia for years. She is known. There was nothing random about this. So either they knew she had been traveling with contraband the entire time and decided to pop her a week before sending troops into Ukraine or they decided to plant contraband on her a week before sending troops into Ukraine. And now she’s being used as a pawn in some sick game that the American higher-ups apparently aren’t even interested in playing. But really the main point is Vladimir Putin is a bitch ass nigga.

I don’t know if this has helped. I don’t know if this is going to reach anyone of influence that can help this situation. I just had some thoughts that I needed to get out. Every day that Griner remains in detention is one day too many. The physical, mental, and emotional toll this is taking on her wife, family, friends, and teammates has to be unbearable. A’ja Wilson broke down in tears recounting how she felt when she saw the images of Brittney being escorted into the courtroom in shackles. To see someone so full of life being stripped of her essence right in front of us for something so insignificant is heartbreaking. Swap her out for someone who actually deserves to be in that type of anguish. We have plenty to choose from and you can start in the Supreme Court.

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