Paige Bueckers is showing white women how to be allies

Paige Bueckers’ ESPYs speech showed wisdom far beyond her years.

Paige Bueckers’ ESPYs speech showed wisdom far beyond her years.
Image: Getty Images

“Celebrating other people’s success doesn’t diminish yours.”

These are the words of a 19-year-old woman still in college. She’s grasped something that many adults twice her age still fail to understand.

We can all win if we come together.

Bueckers took home an ESPY for best college athlete in women’s sports last night, and she made sure she didn’t leave the stage without using her voice to amplify the accomplishments of Black women.

“With the light that I have now as a white woman who leads a Black-led sport and celebrated here, I want to shed a light on Black women,” Bueckers said after thanking her support system. “They don’t get the media coverage that they deserve. They’ve given so much to the sport, the community, and society as a whole and their value is undeniable.”

Bueckers is a sensational talent, so it’s no surprise that she garners a lot of attention. But she has a point. Black women are often the most ignored group in this country. NCAA women’s basketball which is comprised of majority Black women has more stars than just Bueckers, many of them are Black, and they deserve the spotlight shined on them as well.

Bueckers taking the time to bring attention to how Black women are covered in the media shouldn’t be something that’s frowned upon by media members. It should be a wake-up call for the industry to really look at what we are doing and be cognizant of who is getting the main coverage and why they are getting this level of attention.

The Bueckers, Breanna Stewarts, and Sabrina Ionescus of the world will always get their shine because they deserve it. But there are a plethora of Black women in not only women’s basketball but women’s sports in general who also deserve to get their moment in the sun.

And it’s way more than just a few headlines and talking points on shows during the season, the media can significantly influence how much money these women bring in to help themselves and their families especially with the NIL playing a huge role in college sports this upcoming season and beyond.

What Bueckers did is what all self-proclaimed “white allies” should all be doing. Not complaining about “diversity hires” and who should be where, but promoting more diversity in their places of work.

Bueckers stepped up and shed light on a major issue that needs to be addressed. Black women deserve recognition. It’s time for us all to stop ignoring their power.

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