Clippers’ Doc Rivers’ powerful statement about racial injustice amid George Floyd protests
Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers issued a statement on Sunday amid the numerous protests against racial injustice throughout the country.
— LA Clippers (@LAClippers) May 31, 2020
Rivers spoke about his own experience as a Black American, saying “I’ve personally been called more racial slurs than I can count, been pulled over many times because of the color of my skin, and even had my house burned down.”
Doc also contextualized the anger felt by so many, saying the response is one “decades in the making” while also noting “Too often, people rush to judge the response, instead of the actions that prompted it.” Rivers closed by demanding action and also calling citizens to vote in primaries and the general election come November.
Americans have taken to the streets in a number of major cities in protest after George Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis on Monday.
This includes Los Angeles, where California Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency on Saturday. Mayor Eric Garcetti implored both protestors and police to “take a step back” (via NBC 4 LA):
“Whether you wear a badge or whether you hold a sign, I’m asking all of Los Angeles to take a deep breath and step back for a moment,” Garcetti said. “To allow our firefighters to put out the flames. To allow our peace officers to re-establish some order. And, to let them protect your rights to be out there.”
Garcetti also asked Newsom for assistance from the National Guard. Rivers is just one of a host of NBA coaches and players who have spoken out in recent days.
Numerous players attended various protests yesterday, and Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Ryan Saunders also spoke about the importance of listening as someone who does not have many shared experiences with his players. Rivers evokes the same message put forth by protestors and activists throughout the country: enough is enough.