Ever since we stepped into a new decade and a new era, everything has been tough. 2020 has posed us with a lot of challenges, with the coronavirus pandemic being the most dangerous one yet. But May 25, 2020, marked a dark day in the history of the United States. This day contributed to an incident that engulfed the entire country in raging flames. People from the NBA community have deeply been affected by what has transpired over the past few days.
The death of George Floyd due to police brutality has sparked protests all over the nation, especially in Minneapolis, where the incident occurred. Floyd was suspected of forgery by a local Deli who called had 911 called on him. Policeman Derek Chauvin along with three other officers attended the scene.
Chauvin handcuffed Floyd, pinned him to the ground, and kneeled on his neck for more than eight minutes. This caused Floyd to become unresponsive and lose consciousness. He was then declared dead after being taken to a nearby hospital. As of now, the four officers have been terminated from their roles, and Chauvin has been charged with murder.
The killing of Floyd has enraged every other citizen in Minneapolis, which turned into protests quite soon. There have been both violent and peaceful protests across the city.
Former NBA veteran Stephen Jackson is among the most affected by the incident. He was a close friend of George Floyd and often identified him as his “twin” due to their facial resemblance.
Stephen Jackson was deeply affected by the tragic passing of George Floyd. An incident that shook people all over, overwhelmingly took Jackson by surprise. Never in a million years could a person of color think about being killed under the knees of a police officer. A cop is supposed to safeguard the nation and not take away the lives of innocent ones.
Jackson’s tribute to George Floyd at a local rally also saw NBA player Karl-Anthony Towns offering his support. Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic was present at the scene and captured the strong speech delivered by Jackson.
“I’m here because they are not going to demean the character of George Floyd, my twin,” Jackson said, as transcribed by Insider. “A lot of times, when police do things that they know that’s wrong, the first thing they try to do is cover it up and bring up your background to make it seem like the bulls— they did was worth it.”
The 2003 NBA champion did not hold back against targeting the policemen who were responsible for the untimely death of his friend. “When was murder ever worth it? But if it’s a black man, it’s approved. You can’t tell me when that man had that knee on my brother’s neck, taking his life away, with his hands in his pocket, that that smirk on his face didn’t say ‘I’m protected.'”
The 42-year-old strongly condemned violent acts that are primarily based on a person’s color. He expressed his sorrow over the sudden demise and mentioned that everything was falling in place for the Floyd family. A father of two had no place under a policeman’s knee when he wasn’t even physically resisting arrest. “Imagine if he was white,” Jackson said. “Ponder that for a minute. Imagine if he was white.”
Jackson’s heartfelt tribute garnered a lot of supporters who clapped and agreed with his comments on the incident. He feels even if Floyd had committed small forgery of any sort, killing him is no way of teaching a lesson. “You make some bad decisions. It happens, we all make bad decisions, right? Even being successful, I’ve made bad decisions. You get to a point where you make a bad decision and you end up suffering for it.”
The truth of the matter is that the cop mercilessly kneeled on his neck and ended up killing him. With this evidence in his hands, Jackson is willing to do all he can to find the right justice for the murder. “We’re going to use our platform. I’m going to use everything I have to get a conviction to get all these motherf—ers in jail, excuse my friends, I’m angry. I’m a proud black man. I mean that. From the bottom of my soul.”
The 14-year NBA veteran vowed to find the rightful sentence for the officers and put them behind bars for the criminal act. “We came for justice. We came for convictions. I definitely came because this city is definitely going to take care of my brother’s kids. He has two beautiful daughters that he can’t provide for.”
The entire incident is a very worrying issue for all the Americans who have heard about it. Racism should never, ever be the reason behind police brutality. It should come to an end right away. We are sure millions of Americans would agree with the same. The death of George Floyd completely destructs the whole idea of equality and humanity. May he be the last soul to endure such a horrific event.