Partisan Politics: 'The Arena' Features Democrats Abrams, Abdul-Jabbar

July 22nd, 2020 2:03 PM

Cari Champion, left, and Stacey AbramsThere's no pretense of political impartiality on TNT's The Arena (partnering with fellow AT&T property) Bleacher Report. Stacey Abrams, who narrowly lost the race for governor in Georgia in 2018 and then cried "voter suppression," used the second installment of the program Tuesday evening to continue that accusation.

Former First Take moderator and The Arena host Cari Champion introduced Abrams as someone who knews about voter suppression. Abrams said votes are being suppressed in three ways: limiting people's ability to register, cast their ballot or have their ballot counted. "It looks different depending on the state you're in, but those three things are exactly what happens in every state that practices voter suppression."

Draymond Green, forward for the Golden State Warriors and a man who suppressed his own ballot by not voting in 2018, thanked Abrams "for everything you have done over the years as far as voting goes." He also complained that there aren't more black candidates. Abrams delivered a bizarre response to Green, saying ...

" ... I hope that you're voting in 2020, but what I hope even more is when you vote in 2020 you do not do so not simply because of what you see but what you want others to imagine that they can see."

Charles Barkley complained about disagreements between Republicans and Democrats. To which Abrams said, "... If you only elect people who tell you how they're going to hate the other side, then you can't be surprised when all they do is fight with the other side."

The Arena also panelists hyped Abrams as a possible Joe Biden running mate, too.

The second episode of The Arena led off with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar calling for athletes to engage in social justice activism because African Americans are routinely victimized:

We can't go for a walk in the park, a jog in the neighborhood, a drive to the market without fear for our lives. Not just from armed civilians, but from hostile police. Does that sound like home? Our children can't get the same education, health care or career opportunities as white children. Does that sound like home? And some of our neighbors and leaders protect monuments that honor and admire the men who ripped, brutalized our ancestors and ripped children from mothers to sell them. On a purely patriotic level, why are we memorializing the traitors who nearly destroyed the country?

Abdul-Jabbar, who has advised Democrats on how they can beat President Donald Trump, asked why people are not asking for statues of Benedict Arnold. He praised "the most impassioned voices" for social justice, including Colin Kaepernick, Steph Curry, John Carlos, Tommie Smith, Eric Reid, Megan Rapinoe, Brandon Marshall and dozens of others.

"They spoke up when it wasn't popular," Abdul-Jabbar added. "Now it is more important than ever. Whether we want it or not along with the fame and the money comes the responsibility of being role models. ... We need to earn the admiration (of children) by doing more than winning games. We need to make those kids' lives better by giving them all a level playing field. Athletes can't just take the money and run, hoping others will take all the risks that will benefit all of us."

The Arena will continue piling up more free publicity for Democrats Wednesday through Friday. Don't expect equal time for Republicans on TNT.