MIAMI (CBSNewYork/AP) — All-Star guard Dwyane Wade said Saturday that he intends to try to find ways to stop racial violence, and that he has friends who are willing to commit to the cause.
“I think this is a worldly thing. This is not just an African-American thing,” said Wade, who will be signing soon with the Chicago Bulls. “We all believe in one common goal, to stop the violence.”
Two of Wade’s closest friends — Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James — have spoken out on social media in recent days in response to two recent shootings of black men by police officers. Then Thursday in Dallas, five police officers were killed and seven others wounded; one of the suspects allegedly said he was targeting white officers.
Anthony’s message included the words: “There’s NO more sitting back and being afraid of tackling and addressing political issues anymore.”
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First off let me start off by saying " All Praise Due To The Most High." Secondly, I'm all about rallying, protesting, fighting for OUR people. Look I'll even lead the charge, By Any Means Necessary. We have to be smart about what we are doing though. We need to steer our anger in the right direction. The system is Broken. Point blank period. It has been this way forever. Martin Luther King marched. Malcolm X rebelled. Muhammad Ali literally fought for US. Our anger should be towards the system. If the system doesn't change we will continue to turn on the TVs and see the same thing. We have to put the pressure on the people in charge in order to get this thing we call JUSTICE right. A march doesn't work. We tried that. I've tried that. A couple social media post/tweet doesn't work. We've all tried that. That didn't work. Shooting 11 cops and killing 5 WILL NOT work. While I don't have a solution, and I'm pretty sure a lot of people don't have a solution, we need to come together more than anything at this time. We need each other. These politicians have to step up and fight for change. I'm calling for all my fellow ATHLETES to step up and take charge. Go to your local officials, leaders, congressman, assemblymen/assemblywoman and demand change. There's NO more sitting back and being afraid of tackling and addressing political issues anymore. Those days are long gone. We have to step up and take charge. We can't worry about what endorsements we gonna lose or whose going to look at us crazy. I need your voices to be heard. We can demand change. We just have to be willing to. THE TIME IS NOW. IM all in. Take Charge. Take Action. DEMAND CHANGE. Peace7 #StayMe7o
Wade said he loved seeing Anthony say that.
“As an athlete and as a person who has this platform, we like to sell things, we like to be on commercials, we like to do all these things,” Wade said. “But when things come up in life I think you have a responsibility as a face of this world, if you believe in something to get behind that.”
This will not be the first time Wade tackles a polarizing issue. When unarmed teen Trayvon Martin was shot to death by a neighborhood watch volunteer in a gated Central Florida community in 2012, Wade and James — then members of the Heat — arranged a team photo with all players in hoodies, just as Martin wore on the night he was killed.
“It’s awful. It’s always been awful,” Wade said. “Now because of all these cameras and social media, we’re able to see it more. We have to do better. It’s going to take certain people to lend their voice, lend their time to do that. I’m happy to say that I have friends that are willing to do that. We’ll all get together to see what we can do and we can go from there.”
Wade’s foundation also plans on trying to develop safe-havens for kids in Chicago, his hometown and a place that has long been dealing with a gun-violence epidemic. Wade had a nephew injured by gunfire in Chicago in 2012.
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