Unchecked: Thank You, Stephen Jackson

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George Floyd’s daughter Gianna proclaiming “Daddy Changed the World” is simultaneously one of the most heartbreaking and beautiful things I have ever seen. 

Let’s be very clear: It shouldn’t take any child to lose their father for society to push for equality and social justice. With that said, if you take a look at the streets of America and how many have taken to them to stand up in this moment after her father was yet another black man victimized by police brutality, she may be right. 

And I want to take a moment to acknowledge the man whose shoulders she is sitting atop, Stephen Jackson, who has played a significant role in making that change happen. If you ever watched him play in the NBA, you already knew Stephen Jackson was real. And that is a quality needed when it comes to these issues. Authenticity. It is also one that has translated. Many were made aware of this atrocity through Jackson, especially after he personalized his relationship with Floyd. And he hasn’t stopped there, as he has stood up for his friend’s reputation, demanded justice and bluntly asked for support from people of all races. Jackson has come a long way from his playing days to appearing on CNN for his activism. Hopefully the world can follow suit. And the world could use more Stephen Jacksons.

For more on the sports world's reactions to the death of George Floyd: