After the roller coaster of emotions that was last week, many athletes have come out to ask for more public outreach in regards to police violence and accountability.
Not much unlike when NBA players wore t-shirts that read “I Can’t Breathe,” four WNBA players from the Minnesota Lynx wore t-shirts that honored all of last week’s fallen, including Philando Castile, Alton Sterling and the Dallas Police Department. However, the last line on the back of the shirts read “BLACK LIVES MATTER.”
According to the Minneapolis–Star Tribune, four off-duty police officers that were assigned to work the game that night walked off in protest of the athletes’ choice to wear the shirts.
“The Lynx organization was made aware about the concerns of the off duty Minneapolis police officers,” the team said in a statement. “While our players message mourned the loss of life due to last week’s shootings, we respect the right of those individual officers to express their own beliefs in their own way. … We continue to urge a constructive discussion about the issues raised by these tragedies.”
Lt. Bob Kroll, president of the Minneapolis Police Federation, went on record by saying, “I commend them for it.”
The four officers also took their names out of consideration to cover any future events, as well. Apparently, there are other officers who take offense to the team’s message and will also refuse to work any games moving forward.
Kroll even went as far as to suggest that if the team will continue with it’s current position, “all officers may refuse to work there.”
Presumably, the officers didn’t appreciate what they felt was unfair criticism on their parts because of the actions of what they likely consider to be a handful of officers and not generations of police brutality that disproportionately affects the black community.
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