A Day of “Hands Up Don’t Shoot” and “I Can’t Breath” Protests Around the NFL (Video)
Last week five members of the St. Louis Rams walked out onto the field at the Edward Jones dome in St. Louis making the “hands up don’t shoot” gesture. It was a show of solidarity with those protesting police brutality in the wake of the grand jury decision not to indict officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown, and it generated a lot of discussion. Some people were outraged that they would bring politics to the playing field, while others commended them for using their platform to make a statement.
The public discourse only intensified this week, however, when a grand jury in Staten Island decided not to indict officer Daniel Pantaleo in the choking death of Eric Garner. Now, it’s not just Rams players who are making statements. The issue has spread to other teams and other leagues.
On Saturday night, during warmups before the Bulls-Warriors game, Chicago’s Derrick Rose wore a t-shirt that said “I can’t breath“—the phrase Eric Garner shouted 11 times as a member of the NYPD choked him to death.
On Sunday, a number of NFL players also weighed in. Here is Cleveland Browns cornerback Johnson Bademosi:
And here is Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush:
Meanwhile in Washington, defensive end Chris Baker did the “hands up don’t shoot” gesture to “celebrate” a sack on St. Louis quarterback Shaun Hill:
Let the debate continue…