Britney Greiner faces 9 years in a Russian penal colony. Where is the liberation campaign?

Where is the protest against the freedom of Britney Grenier? Last month, it looked as if the basketball star who was sentenced to nine years in a Russian prison for possession of a vape cartridge in a handbag at the airport might find her way to the United States. The players were talking, and the State Department was insisting that Britney’s homecoming was, at last, high on her to-do list.

But since then we have heard very little. We have just crossed the 200 day mark since Griner Prison. Unless the barter takes place soon, the Griner is ready to live within Brutal Punishment Colony It’s like a “concentration camp”. This Russian penal colony involves living in barracks and hard work. Human rights groups have reported overcrowding, malnutrition, poor waste disposal, and low temperatures in these particular camps. They also tried to highlight sexual violence and abuse in these camps, especially against gay prisoners.

In light of the circumstances it is about to face, we must intensify our efforts to free Griner. It has been reported until Up to 30 US players He will go to Russia to play during the WNBA off-season. This is largely due to the weak salary structure of the WNBA, but these players will make themselves hostages in Russia much different than they were accustomed to a year ago. Here’s the prayer they are going through, especially given the restrictions on speech and the possibility of imprisonment. Also, while it is understood that players should earn and support their families, the players’ boycott of Russia seems more than appropriate. Women’s leagues in Russia are popular precisely because of American talent. Sabotaging the basketball season will send a message to Moscow, where Recent articles highlighted Isolation of the city from the reality of the invasion of Ukraine. (Maybe the NBA should support the players so they don’t go to Russia.)

In the United States, we’re seeing less interest as its plight, not to mention Ukraine’s war, fades into the background of the growing noise surrounding the 2022 midterm elections. The rarity of protest was a relief to me on Labor Day when the National Women’s Basketball Players Association, the WNBA Players Association, released , a social media appeal to all American Federation members to sign the Change.org petition in support of Greiner. This is welcome, but we have already submitted online petitions. What I’d like to see is the WNBPA issuing an open invitation on social media for other sports unions – NBPA, NFLPA, MLBPA, NHLPA, and USWNTPA – for a joint press conference calling for the launch of the Griner. They could also invite the AFL-CIO to play a more active role in lobbying the Biden administration and demanding that Putin release Griner from the Kafka hell in which she finds herself.

There are other parts of our culture working against the Griner. The NFL season begins this week, and that means a dominant cultural force to eliminate coverage of anything else from the sports world. The media interest in Greiner prison from the world of sports has already been little. But it will look as if football will have around-the-clock coverage once the NFL takes off.

The flip side is that the right wing of both the sports world and American society – including their leader, the “semi-fascist” Donald Trump – has decided that confronting an American for nine years in a penal colony is no big deal. ; that Griner somehow”spoiled“And she deserves her fate. This is horrific, and if Tom Brady is caught in the same circumstances, these same people will demand the Navy SEALs secure his release. To the WNBA family’s great credit, they didn’t call for an extended war in the name of Griner but instead put pressure on Biden.” exchange but many prisoners are necessary to secure her freedom. However, in the broader culture we imprint Greiner’s inferno. This is not only disastrous for Greiner, her wife Cheryl and everyone who supports her. It dehumanizes us all. The guiding phrase should be “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice in Everywhere.” Instead, we get the phrase “out of sight, out of mind” — and that’s a disgrace.

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