The GOAT, Michael Jordan says he is “deeply saddened, truly pained and plain angry,” following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and the civil unrest that has followed. The six-time NBA champion is the only African-American majority owner of an NBA franchise, issued a statement through the Charlotte Hornets.
Michael Jordan knows money alone can’t solve racism, or barriers to upward mobility for the poor. But he hopes the pledge he and Jordan Brand made Friday — to donate $100 million over the next 10 years — helps start a conversation and a level of education that can finally end the ingrained racism.
“We have encountered racism to be somewhat acceptable in certain circles,” Jordan told in an interview via The Observer. “We’ve got to understand at an early age (that can’t be tolerated). Education is such an important part” of societal change. The pledge, by Jordan and his Jordan Brand will go to support organizations working for racial equality, social justice and greater access to education.
Jordan said that element — access to education — is crucial to both upward mobility and changing cultural norms regarding race and poverty. He called the killing of African American George Floyd in Minneapolis by a white policeman the “tipping point” for decades of black outrage over brutality toward people of color.
Jordan joined numerous figures in pro and college sports speaking on civil justice following Floyd’s death. “We need to continue peaceful expressions against injustice and demand accountability,” Jordan said.
“Our unified voice needs to put pressure on our leaders to change our laws, or else we need to use our vote to create systemic change. Every one of us needs to be part of the solution, and we must work together to ensure justice for all.”
With additional reports: The Charlotte Observer, Rick Bonnel, AFP
Photo sources: cnn.com, sfgate.com, twitter