The Washington Mystics wore orange shirts during pregame warmups before their matchup vs. the Las Vegas Aces on Saturday afternoon. Behind the shirts lies a cause that is very important to players within the organization.
The Mystics are embarking on the #WearOrange campaign to honor victims and survivors of gun violence. Per a press release from the team, “Orange is the color that Hadiya Pendleton’s friends wore in her honor after she was shot and killed in Chicago at the age of 15. Her friends asked us to stand up and speak out, and they inspired a movement.”
Mystics star guard Natasha Cloud was featured in a video Tweeted by the team earlier this week in which she lays out the meaning behind the movement. “It’s unacceptable to me that more than a hundred people are killed and hundreds more are wounded by firearms in our country every day, and that so many Black and brown communities—including our own Ward 8 right here in D.C.—are disproportionately impacted.”
Gun violence is an issue that is close to home for the Mystics, as the nation’s capital has the second-highest rate of gun homicides and gun assaults in the country, per the team’s statement. This past Friday, June 4, was the seventh annual Gun Violence Awareness Day, hence the timing of the Mystics’ effort.
“In our communities, gun violence is pervasive, long lasting, and impacts everyone uniquely. Wear Orange is an opportunity to demonstrate our collective power as members of the gun violence prevention movement, bringing together thousands of Americans who believe that we can end gun violence,” the team statement continued. Washington went into the contest vs. Las Vegas 2-6 on the season, and are looking for a win before they take on Minnesota at home on Tuesday.
For more information on the Mystics’ #WearOrange campaign, and for resources on gun safety, visit https://mystics.wnba.com/wear-orange/