“Overwhelmed and incompetent to express my thoughts on the murder of George Floyd and the top of social injustice,” West Virginia football head coach Neal Brown said in a statement he released on social media Saturday following the death of George Floyd by the hands of now-former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin.
I think we can all relate to those sentiments. I found myself facing the same challenge after I watched the video of Floyd's death. I too felt the anguish, sorrow, frustration, anger, and hurt that so many of us felt when the video surfaced on social media but couldn't find the words to voice my outrage and honestly, still can't.
Brown did gather his thoughts and had fortitude address the topic of social injustice and it started by talking to his diverse group of players and then sat his children down and educated them on the topic of social injustice.
Then, West Virginia head basketball coach Bob Huggins used his platform to shed more light on the issue and said, “I will do my part for my family, team and as American to no longer stay quiet!”.
While the sentiments are great and are important during civil unrest, there will need to be more than just making statements for our society to change. I believe listening and educating is a start in order for things to evolve.
My hope is leaders like Bob Huggins and Neal Brown, who lead a diverse group of student-athletes for a common goal between the lines, can use those same tools and their platform to bring people together to implement change in the communities.
This responsibility doesn’t fall on a handful of men and women, it falls on all of us. We must come together, seek common ground, and root out the evil that is racism that has been plaguing us for far too long. Be the change, be the light, and don't stay quiet.
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