politico.com
Michael Jordan weighs in on police shootings
By BIANCA PADRÓ OCASIO

Michael Jordan made a rare foray into politics on Monday, addressing the rising tensions between African Americans and the police and announcing donations to support positive community policing.

“As a proud American, a father who lost his own dad in a senseless act of violence, and a black man, I have been deeply troubled by the deaths of African-Americans at the hands of law enforcement and angered by the cowardly and hateful targeting and killing of police officers,” the former NBA star said in a letter published in The Undefeated, a start-up site focused on the intersection between sports, race and culture.

Although Jordan admitted his experiences with law enforcement might be different than those of other people of color, he hopes police relations with their communities can be mended “through peaceful dialogue and education.”

“Over the past three decades I have seen up close the dedication of the law enforcement officers who protect me and my family,” Jordan said. “We need to find solutions that ensure people of color receive fair and equal treatment AND that police officers – who put their lives on the line every day to protect us all – are respected and supported.”

Jordan, who owns the Charlotte Hornets, added that he would be making $1 million contributions to both the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s Institute for Community-Police Relations and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

“The problems we face didn’t happen overnight and they won’t be solved tomorrow, but if we all work together, we can foster greater understanding, positive change and create a more peaceful world for ourselves, our children, our families and our communities,” Jordan wrote.

Read more here

MICHAEL JORDAN ON POLICE SHOOTINGS: ‘I CAN NO LONGER STAY SILENT’

As a proud American, a father who lost his own dad in a senseless act of violence, and a black man, I have been deeply troubled by the deaths of African-Americans at the hands of law enforcement and angered by the cowardly and hateful targeting and killing of police officers. I grieve with the families who have lost loved ones, as I know their pain all too well.

I was raised by parents who taught me to love and respect people regardless of their race or background, so I am saddened and frustrated by the divisive rhetoric and racial tensions that seem to be getting worse as of late. I know this country is better than that, and I can no longer stay silent. We need to find solutions that ensure people of color receive fair and equal treatment AND that police officers – who put their lives on the line every day to protect us all – are respected and supported.

Over the past three decades I have seen up close the dedication of the law enforcement officers who protect me and my family. I have the greatest respect for their sacrifice and service. I also recognize that for many people of color their experiences with law enforcement have been different than mine. I have decided to speak out in the hope that we can come together as Americans, and through peaceful dialogue and education, achieve constructive change.

To support that effort, I am making contributions of $1 million each to two organizations, the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s newly established Institute for Community-Police Relations and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. The Institute for Community-Police Relations’ policy and oversight work is focused on building trust and promoting best practices in community policing. My donation to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the nation’s oldest civil rights law organization, will support its ongoing work in support of reforms that will build trust and respect between communities and law enforcement. Although I know these contributions alone are not enough to solve the problem, I hope the resources will help both organizations make a positive difference.

We are privileged to live in the world’s greatest country – a country that has provided my family and me the greatest of opportunities. The problems we face didn’t happen overnight and they won’t be solved tomorrow, but if we all work together, we can foster greater understanding, positive change and create a more peaceful world for ourselves, our children, our families and our communities.


Michael’s letter exclusively to The Undefeated, pure class as always.

“[…] I am saddened and frustrated by the divisive rhetoric and racial tensions that seem to be getting worse as of late. I know this country is better than that, and I can no longer stay silent. We need to find solutions that ensure people of color receive fair and equal treatment AND that police officers — who put their lives on the line every day to protect us all — are respected and supported.”

Michael Jordan speaks out on police shootings: ‘I can no longer stay silent’

indyweek.com
Pat McCrory Has Lost It
McCrory blames a prominent fighter for LGBT equality for drawing attention to the stupid bill he signed.
By Paul Blest

The NBA moved the NBA All Star game out of Charlotte yesterday, and Republicans sure are pissed about it.  The office of Lt. Gov. Dan Forest sent us a statement riddled with errors and fearmongering after we posted our original story about it yesterday, but it turns out Forest isn’t the only one losing his tenuous grasp on reality.

Chris Sgro, the Equality NC director who served in the short session as a state representative from Greensboro, had a pretty interesting interaction with McCrory as he was walking into a press conference in Charlotte. From Sgro’s Twitter:

[tweets]

“The governor was on Charlotte Talks this morning,” Sgro tells the INDY.  “He was just spouting a tremendous amount of mistruths in Charlotte’s role in losing the All-Star game and safety and security… so I went over to his press conference, and then he moved the press conference to a secure location that I didn’t have access to.”

Sgro then says the interaction described in his tweets happened, and McCrory then ducked back into the room before Sgro had a chance to reply.  “No one got what they wanted, and the fault is with the governor,” Sgro says.  “If the governor is going to continue to spread false information about HB 2 and its impacts, as well as what happened with the All-Star Game, when he knows very well that it’ll move to a city with the protections Charlotte had, he owes a conversation to the LGBT community.  And that’s something that needs to happen soon.”

Sgro is right: New Orleans, which is said to be the frontrunner to get the All-Star game, is one of over 200 American cities that has a non-discrimination ordinance which has protections based on gender identity.  Surely, it has to be a coincidence that they’re thinking about moving it to another Southern city which doesn’t have legalized bigotry (of this kind, anyway) forced onto it by the state legislature.

McCrory shouldn’t take it from us: he should give the NBA’s statement a read. Emphasis ours:

Since March, when North Carolina enacted HB2 and the issue of legal protections for the LGBT community in Charlotte became prominent, the NBA and the Charlotte Hornets have been working diligently to foster constructive dialogue and try to effect positive change.  We have been guided in these discussions by the long-standing core values of our league.  These include not only diversity, inclusion, fairness and respect for others but also the willingness to listen and consider opposing points of view.

“Our week-long schedule of All-Star events and activities is intended to be a global celebration of basketball, our league, and the values for which we stand, and to bring together all members of the NBA community – current and former players, league and team officials, business partners, and fans.  While we recognize that the NBA cannot choose the law in every city, state, and country in which we do business, we do not believe we can successfully host our All-Star festivities in Charlotte in the climate created by HB2.“ 

Notice that you won’t find Sgro, Charlotte mayor Jennifer Roberts, the Charlotte City Council, the LGBT community, or any other group McCrory would like to blame for losing a nearly $200 million event, listed as the reason why the NBA is moving the All-Star Game.  No, the NBA itself specifically says that the "climate created by HB 2,” which was rammed through in a one-day special session and then signed into law that night by Governor Ralph Wiggum, was the basis for the decision.

Own it, Governor.  You helped create this monster, and it’s time to stop blaming everyone else who drew attention to the destruction it caused.

Ralph Wiggum?  Eh, I see McCrory as more the Mr. Smithers to Art Pope’s Mr. Burns.

vine

Big takeaway from Team USA’s blowout exhibition victory over China: You really, really don’t want to lose DeAndre Jordan on an inbounds play.

Barcelona, 1992: Two words - Dream. Team. #50Days50Moments
Players from the victorious #USA Olympic Men’s #Basketball team accept their gold medals in a ceremony following the final round. It marked the first year that #NBA players participated in the #Olympics | 📷: Mike Powell/Allsport | #GettySport #🏀 #🇺🇸 #Rio2016 #RoadToRio
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