Doug Baldwin became the latest member of the Seattle Seahawks to speak up about police brutality during this week’s media sessions, opening his Thursday presser with a statement calling for a nationwide review of police policies and training procedures.
In the wake of ongoing police killings in the U.S., including the recent shootings of Terence Crutcher and Keith Lamont Scott, Baldwin spoke out, continuing the widespread dialogue going on around the league surrounding racial injustice.
“Obviously, we know the national attention is [on] what’s going on in our communities and in our society right now, specifically pertaining to black people, minorities, and how they’re being treater by some members of our law enforcement across the country. You’ve seen the protest. You’ve heard the message. And now I think it’s time for us to hold each other accountable, and when I say hold each other accountable, I mean to the preamble of the United States Constitution, which states, and I quote, that “in order to form a more perfect union, we must establish justice and ensure domestic tranquility.”
Baldwin, whose father is a police officer, discussed the 2014 killing of Tamir Rice, quoting a Department of Justice investigation that found “officers did not effectively deescalate situations either because they did not know how or did not have adequate understanding” of how to do so before using force.
“This is not an isolated incident,” Baldwin reminded those in attendance, also noting that “a very minute few” officers have been responsible for deaths and not following laws and police policies. “...Now this is not an indictment of our law enforcement agencies, I just want that to be clear...however, we also know that there are laws and policies that are in place that are not correcting the issues that we have in our society right now.”
“...as an American, a black male in this country, I’m suggesting, calling – I’m demanding that all 50 state attorney generals call for a review of their policies and training policies for police and law enforcement to eliminate militaristic cultures,” he continued, “while putting a higher emphasis on deescalation tactics and crisis management measures.”
Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson tweeted at Baldwin later Wednesday that he planned to reach out and have a conversation.
Defensive end Michael Bennett followed Baldwin’s presser and reiterated that he agreed with his teammate. Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman took a similar stance on Wednesday, opting to speak on the pressing social issues rather than discuss football matters at length.