Millions of Americans have come together after the death of George Floyd, a black man who was killed in police custody as a white police officer knelt on his neck for nine minutes.
As athletes and public figures show up to protests and use their voices to invoke change, Rangers outfielder Willie Calhoun took to twitter to voice his concern about the racial divide in America.
Calhoun tweeted “I usually don't get into this really, but from what I've been seeing is heartbreaking. It's unreal that we're living in a society where the color of our skin STILL matters and puts a target on our backs. As a young black male watching what is going on with racial injustice and inequalities is unbelievable. I was never taught to look at another person for the color of their skin, but I was taught how to treat others with respect and compassion as a person no matter what. Things have to change and in order to move into a more positive direction, we must come together as a whole and work for our communities. Please stay safe everyone.”
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Madelyn Burke: Millions of Americans have come together after the death of George Floyd, a black man who was killed in police custody in Minneapolis as a white police officer knelt on his neck for nine minutes. Rangers outfielder Willie Calhoun joins me now. And Willie, you recently tweeted about the racial divide in America and what's the message that you hope to get across?
Willie Calhoun: Yeah, the message that I hope to get across, you know, just being able to use my platform to be able to speak for the many African-Americans that haven't been able to, you know, be able to get their point across. I understand the frustration that they have with what's going on. I know it's an uncomfortable subject to talk about, but I mean, it's something I think that needs to be talked about more often. And the just to be able to get the point across for them to come to. Like, be able to, like, understand what's going on, like in a way. It's just I think it's a lot going on. I think it's something that's been going on for a while. And to be able to do this and see what's gone on through the United States is pretty crazy. Like I said, I live I live in Dallas. So, I mean, it's it's it's pretty bad here right now. And we even have a curfew right now. And I don't think rioting and looting, this is the right thing to do. It's just a bunch of frustration built up, that's been built up over time.
Madelyn Burke: Well, and you mentioned, you know, as a black man who grew up in California. You've experienced some of that racial profiling that you've seen in America. Obviously not to this extent. But, you know, using your voice, using your platform. A lot of people have made the point, though, how important it is for white athletes and white public figures also speak out and have you heard from some of your white teammates? What does that mean to hear them kind of speak out on this issue as well?
Willie Calhoun: Yeah, no, it's a good thing. It's a good feeling for sure. Just because, you know, I love all my teammates. I regardless of the race, we have a lot of different races on our team. But to be able to hear like my teammates, you know, I'm around them every single day throughout a full season. So it's good to know, like, everyone's on the same page. And we don't really have that. We don't really have that issue within our team. So I know that that's a good thing. But I mean, seeing other players and other athletes throughout other sports speak up about it is pretty cool to see that as well. I guess I think we just have to come together as a whole and just as a human, just be a good human overall. And, you know, regardless of the race, regardless of the color of your skin, you should be treated with respect and, you know, regardless of it. So it's pretty cool to see other athletes speaking up as well.
Madelyn Burke: Absolutely. And as you mentioned, this is a human issue. Rangers outfielder Willie Calhoun, thank you so much for taking the time and for using your platform for good.
Willie Calhoun: Yeah, for sure.