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‘Plain angry’ Jordan joins sports world call for change

‘Plain angry’ Jordan joins sports world call for change

AFP
Los Angeles
NBA icon Michael Jordan decried “ingrained racism” in America as the sports world’s reaction to the death of unarmed black man George Floyd leapt leagues and continents.
“I am deeply saddened, truly pained and plain angry,” Jordan said in a statement on Sunday, as protests over Floyd’s death on May 25 spawned violence and looting. “I stand with those who are calling out the ingrained racism and violence toward people of color in our country彩票信誉平台.
“We have had enough,” said Jordan, who was famously reluctant to comment on social issues during his playing career.
“We need to continue peaceful expressions against injustice and demand accountability,” Jordan said.
Jordan joined a chorus of voices from the NBA, NFL and other US sports demanding change for black Americans, but the demands weren’t limited to the United States.
French footballer Marcus Thuram and England international Jadon Sancho called for justice for Floyd after scoring in Germany’s Bundesliga.
Thuram took a knee after scoring for Borussia Moenchengladbach in a match against Union Berlin, while Sancho marked one of his three goals for Borussia Dortmund against Paderborn by lifting his jersey to reveal a T-shirt bearing the words “Justice for George Floyd.”
Thuram’s gesture echoed the protest of US racism spearheaded by former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, whose decision to kneel during the national anthem at games in 2016 sparked outrage.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver sent an internal memo to NBA employees on Sunday that said the league shares “the outrage” that has followed the death of Floyd.
With US pro sports on hold amid the coronavirus pandemic, American athletes had no chance to demonstrate on the field of play.
Boston Celtics forward Jaylen Brown and Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris were among a number of NBA players who took part in demonstrations over the weekend.
Brown drove 15 hours to lead a peaceful protest march in Atlanta, Georgia.
“First and foremost, I’m a black man and I’m a member of this community,” the Georgia native said.
US tennis great Serena Williams posted a moving video on Instagram that featured a young African-American girl overcome by emotion as she addressed a public meeting, finally able to force out the words: “We are black people, and we shouldn’t have to feel like this.”
Teenage tennis phenom Coco Gauff, who is black, had a simple question on her Instagram post: “Am I next?”
And two-time Grand Slam winner Naomi Osaka, whose mother is Japanese and father Haitian, reminded her social media followers: “Just because it isn’t happening to you doesn’t mean it isn’t happening at all.”
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said the violent protests “reflect the pain, anger and frustration that so many of us feel.
With Kaepernick still unable to find a job in the NFL, not everyone was convinced by Goodell or by San Francisco 49ers chief executive Jed York, who pledged $1 million to combat systemic racial discrimination.
Former 49er Eric Reid, who knelt alongside Kaepernick tweeted: “Nobody wants your money Jed. We want justice.”

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