Professional Athletes Are Sick and Tired of Racism in America and Finally Speaking Up About It

December 7th 2014

Evan Aczon

With unrest continuing around the country following the grand jury decisions about Mike Brown and Eric Garner in Missouri and New York, athletes have been weighing in regarding the decisions since then. 

Former Los Angeles Lakers star and part owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers Magic Johnson tweeted right after the decision not to indict Darren Wilson.

Johnson also expressed support for Lebron James, who had posted the following post on his Instagram page:

"They have to get involved socially," Johnson told ESPN (via Sporting News). "They have to because it affects them, too. And it affects their families. They grew up in these situations; they must not forget that. They (were) once poor, they went to inner-city schools that didn't have technology or computers, they didn't have good books. LeBron is a great example of doing a wonderful job. When this first came out, when you think about everything that he stood up for — the Donald Sterling thing, when that mess happened, just now with these young people being shot down unarmed, he's been right out front, so I've got to give him a lot of credit. If he's out front being the best player, then the other guys usually follow the best guy."

Players for the St. Louis Rams also made a statement when they played the Oakland Raiders in their first game after the ruling in Ferguson, as five players led the team out of the locker room with their hands up. 

This drew the ire of the St. Louis Police Department, who condemned the act, but Jared Cook, one of the players who participated, stated that he would "absolutely" do it again.

College students also made statements, as Ariyana Smith, a college basketball player at Knox College in Illinois, held a singular protest by delaying the start of her game for four and a half minutes. She was subsequently suspended but that ban has been lifted. Deon Long, a football player from the University of Maryland, posted this tweet.

After the Eric Garner decision in Staten Island, more athletes weighed in, with Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose wearing this shirt before Saturday's contest with the Golden State Warriors and Detroit Lions runningback Reggie Bush wore a similar shirt on Sunday during pregame warmups.