Professional athletes have big voices and it always makes me happy when I see a professional athlete, whether it be current or retired, use their voice to support worthwhile causes. I get particularly excited when I see sports figures publicly support cannabis. Sports leagues have always had large, loyal followings, and professional athletes have fan bases that include people that are either on the fence about cannabis reform or outright opposed to it.
Cannabis activists can talk to that crowd until we are blue in the face about the merits of cannabis reform, but sometimes they are receptive to it and sometimes they are not. But when an athlete that they like talks about cannabis reform, they are much more receptive to the message. I have seen it play out in my own life, with people going from indifferent about cannabis to fully supporting cannabis reform after retired NBA All-Star Clifford ‘Uncle Cliffy‘ Robinson announced he was entering the cannabis space. People I had been talking to for years and not getting any traction became convinced overnight. It was truly remarkable to witness.
The same is true for other athletes and their fanbases in all professional sports. More and more athletes are coming out in support of cannabis reform because of cannabis’ medical benefits, and the fact that cannabis prohibition is a failed, racist policy whether it’s in society or professional sports. A current athlete that has been doing a lot of great things in regards to advocating for cannabis reform in professional sports is Tennessee Titans linebacker Derrick Morgan.
It takes a tremendous amount of courage to step up and speak out in support of cannabis reform when an athlete is still in the middle of their playing career. Just as I tipped my hat to Eugene Monroe for doing so while he was an active player in the NFL, so too do I tip my hat to Derrick Morgan for the outstanding advocacy he has been performing in recent years. It appears that Derrick Morgan is going to be doing something this Sunday that is particularly inspirational. Morgan is going to be wearing custom cleats this Sunday that promote cannabis, according to a tweet by the pro-cannabis non-profit Realm of Caring. Tennessee reporter Jason Wolf also tweeted that the cleats would be worn this Sunday by Derrick Morgan. Below is a picture of the cleats:
The @NFL is raising awareness for charities through the #MyCauseMyCleats drive. Derrick Morgan of the @Titans is RoC-ing a pair of cleats with our logo! Tune in this Sunday at 11:00 MST to the Titan's game to see them in action! pic.twitter.com/xSnASm4zB6
— Realm of Caring (@realmofcaring) November 29, 2017
The cleats are being worn as part of the NFL’s ‘My Cause, My Cleats’ campaign, a description of is below via NFL.com:
NFL players will have the chance to share the causes that are important to them during all Week 13 games, as part of the NFL’s My Cause, My Cleats campaign. The initiative is a culmination of 18 months of collaborative work between the NFL and players across the league, and it includes an online storytelling platform, in partnership with The Players’ Tribune.
So far I have been unable to locate Derrick’s online storytelling information, or really any information above and beyond what I have seen on Twitter. I am sure more information will come out as time goes on and Sunday approaches. I hope that Morgan really is wearing the cleats, that the NFL will not stand in his way, and that the message of cannabis’ healing properties reaches as many people as possible. Below is more information about the cause that Derrick Morgan is supporting, Realm of Caring, via their website:
The Realm of Caring Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Colorado Springs, Colorado. We have 16 full and part time staff members supporting over 30,000 clients throughout the U.S. and the world.
The Realm of Caring Foundation was informally established by the Stanley Brothers, Paige Figi, and Heather Jackson. Paige’s daughter, Charlotte, and Heather’s son, Zaki, were the first two success stories using Charlotte’s Web™ in early 2012. After receiving several inquiries from families seeking help around the world, the group recognized the need to create a formal organization to not only collect research and data on individuals using cannabis products, but to also educate and advocate about this often misunderstood form of therapy.
The Stanleys have since transitioned away from the Realm of Caring to focus their efforts on production and new product development. Paige has fulfilled a needed legislative role serving as Executive Director of Coalition for Access Now, a 501c4 organization committed to educating the public and lawmakers on the health benefits associated with natural therapies derived from cannabis for chronic health conditions. Heather is serving as the Chief Executive Officer of the Realm of Caring, a 501c3 entity.
The Realm of Caring Foundation was formally established on 8/13/13, and has received its 501c3 designation as a recognized non-profit entity. We continue with the same mission and vision that we always have. Our advocacy work has been featured in media outlets across the country including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Time, NBC, and two CNN specials hosted by Dr. Sanjay Gupta.