An Open Letter to Carmelo Anthony
An open letter to Melo dedicated to Olympic Greatness, NBA Championships, and Social Responsibility
You’re a legend. Now that you’ve won three gold medals, have the most points, rebounds and games in Olympic history…you are officially a Hall of Fame basketball player, an International legend, and arguably the greatest Olympic Basketball player ever.
Despite an evident desire for a NBA Championship, that reflects in your will, work ethic, drive and passion…your efforts for a Ring have come up short. At this point, 32 years old, it cannot be argued that you’re you’re on the latter end of your career. You’re no longer a kid. I know a NBA Championship is always the goal, but without ever winning a ring, you are one of the most prolific scorers in Basketball history and undoubtedly one of the Greatest.
Since you’ve been drafted you’ve scored the most points in the league along with Kobe and Lebron. To many, you’ve had no major help wherever you’ve played. All in all, some may say you’re situation has never been a Championship one.
Some may argue that right now the Knicks are a Championship contender with the new additions to the roster; however, the East is a much different conference with teams like the Milwaukee Bucks, Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors and others all deeper, stronger, and more experienced. Each of these teams; however, are all contending to be second place to the dominant Cleveland Cavaliers! So, in my opinion, when faced the question: “Are the Knicks a Championship team?”…the conclusion many have come to is currently, no they’re not.
With that said, is it time to stop? Is it time to retire? No…Melo, I believe you have many more years to play in the NBA and could possibly contend for a Championship one day.
Today, I am writing this letter to express that despite your desires, I do not believe a NBA Championship should be the goal for your career any longer.
As the controversial racial relations have climaxed this year, I saw you and several other NBA players make many political stances, including the stance made at the 2016 ESPY’s (see video below).
This political stance was genuine, authentic, strategically planned, and powerful. I believe that this and the other countless actions you have taken in response to the racial relations right now, have placed yourself, whether intentionally or not, in a leadership position as a politically active NBA player.
However, I do not believe being politically active in the capacity that you have been is enough any longer. I believe that you are being faced with a choice right now Melo. I was disappointed to see that no political actions were taken at the US Olympics this year. Especially when I place the type of leader I believe you to be, in context with the Black Athletic Political Leaders in the past. I know winning a Gold medal was a victory for America overall; however, how does that medal truly make an impact on the police shootings that have continued to happen even after the Olympics. A man by the name of Daniel Harris, a deaf White man, was shot and killed by a North Carolina State Trooper today. The racial problems in our country have become so deep that all Americans are beginning to suffer from the injustices the Black Community have been suffering from for years.
I believe you specifically, Carmelo Anthony, are being faced with a choice right now.
Either way your career progresses you will be everything I stated in the first section of this letter and more. But…if you choose to truly take up a politically active position as the Black leader that you are beginning to step up to be…if you choose to make your voice heard in a powerful, planned, strategic, genuine way, over and over again, on the biggest platforms that you have access to…if you choose to sacrifice your life, image, and brand to fight a system that is targeting Black men everyday…if you choose to continue to fight this system like you have been, and not only with actions, but with the powerful voice that you have as well…Well Carmelo I, believe that making this choice, would catapult you beyond the lines of the NBA Greats and into the history books.. alongside the lines of Historically Great Black People like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Muhammad Ali, Jim Brown, Olympians Tommie Smith and John Carlos…all people who stepped up to their social responsibility and are highly respected, not only for their athletic accomplishments, but for using the platform they were given to unapologetically step up and fight for their communities.
I see this potential in you Carmelo. The potential to be one of the Leaders that our community needs during this time. In my opinion though, you have a choice. Choose wisely.