Chicago athletes speak out on social media on the death of George Floyd, protests, and racism

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Protesters clash with police in Chicago , on May 30, 2020 during a protest against the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died while while being arrested and pinned to the ground by the knee of a Minneapolis police officer. (Photo by Jim Vondruska/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

CHICAGO – Many athletes across the country are taking to their social media accounts to express their feelings on a number of issues surrounding the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis Police officers.

Many hear in Chicago are using their voice to speak out on racism, police brutality, and a call to action following Floyd’s death. The calls have come from athletes from many sports and many races over the weekend and Monday.

That includes a number of Chicago Bulls’ players, including center Wendell Carter Jr., forward Thaddeus Young, along with guards Zach LaVine and Coby White.

Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews and forward Zach Smith had powerful statements of their own on social media.

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A lot of people may claim these riots and acts of destruction are a terrible response. I’ll be the first to admit that as a white male that was also my first reaction. But who am I to tell someone that their pain is not real? Especially when it is at a boiling point and impossible to hold in anymore. It’s obviously coming from a place of truth. This reaction isn’t coming out of thin air. I’m not condoning or approving the looting, but are we really going to sit here and say that peaceful protesting is the only answer? There has been plenty of time for that, and if it was the answer we would’ve given it our full attention long ago. Listen to these two men debate. They are lost, they are in pain. They strived for a better future but as they get older they realize their efforts may be futile. They don’t know the answer of how to solve this problem for the next generation of black women and men. This breaks my heart. I can’t pretend for a second that I know what it feels like to walk in a black man’s shoes. However, seeing the video of George Floyd’s death and the violent reaction across the country moved me to tears. It has pushed me to think, how much pain are black people and other minorities really feeling? What have Native American people dealt with in both Canada and US? What is it really like to grow up in their world? Where am I ignorant about the privileges that I may have that others don’t? Compassion to me is at least trying to FEEL and UNDERSTAND what someone else is going through. For just a moment maybe I can try to see the world through their eyes. Covid has been rough but it has given us the opportunity to be much less preoccupied with our busy lives. We can no longer distract ourselves from the truth of what is going on. My message isn’t for black people and what they should do going forward. My message is to white people to open our eyes and our hearts. That’s the only choice we have, otherwise this will continue. Let’s choose to fight hate and fear with love and awareness. Ask not what can you do for me, but what can I do for you? Be the one to make the first move. In the end, love conquers all. #blacklivesmatter

A post shared by Jonathan Toews (@jonathantoews) on

White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson and pitcher Lucas Giolito have also expressed their support for those protesting for equality.

A few Chicago Bears players have been on social media showing support towards the cause, including linebacker Josh Woods. He’s been in his hometown of Baltimore marching with “Black Lives Matter” protestors.

Chicago Sky head coach and general manager James Wade had a lengthy statement posted on Twitter this weekend on Floyd’s death, the issue of racism, and the protests.

Red Stars forward Julie Ertz had a joint statement with her husband, Eagles tight end Zach, on Twitter on Friday.

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