Sunday, May 31, 2020

Jaylen Brown drives 15 hours from Boston to lead protest in Atlanta

Celtics guard Jaylen Brown led a peaceful protest march in Atlanta, Georgia on Saturday night.

Brown, who posted videos and images on his social media accounts, said in a livestream that he drove 15 hours from Boston to Atlanta -- which is about a 20-minute drive southeast of his native Marietta, Georgia.
"I drove 15 hours to get to Georgia, my community," Brown said. "This is a peaceful protest. Being a celebrity, being an NBA player, don't exclude me from no conversations at all. First and foremost, I'm a black man and I'm a member of this community. ... We're raising awareness for some of the injustices that we've been seeing. It's not OK. 
"As a young person, you've got to listen to our perspective. Our voices need to be heard. I'm 23 years old. I don't know all of the answers. But I feel how everybody else is feeling, for sure. No question."
Brown is a vice president of the National Basketball Players Association, as he marched with a megaphone while holding a sign that read, "I Can't Breathe," referring to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last Monday.

Floyd, who is black, died after white police officer Derek Chauvin kneeled on his neck for several minutes. Floyd's death has sparked protests in Minneapolis and other cities across the United States.

Brown was joined by Indiana Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon, as well as rapper Lil' Yachty.
 "I've got brothers, I've got sisters, I've got friends that are in the streets, that are out here, that haven't made it to this level, that are experiencing it, that are getting pulled over, just discrimination, day after day," Brogdon told protesters in a video posted to Brown's Instagram page. "Dealing with the same bulls---. This is systematic. This isn't something where we come and ... we don't have to burn down our homes. We built this city. This is the most proudly black city in the world. In the world, man. Let's take some pride in that. Let's focus our energy. Let's enjoy this together.
"This is a moment. We have leverage right now. We have a moment in time. People are going to look back, our kids are going to look back at this and say, 'You were part of that.' I've got a grandfather that marched next to [Martin Luther King Jr.] in the '60s, and he was amazing. He would be proud to see us all here. We got to keep pushing forward. Jaylen has led this charge, man, and I'm proud of him. We need more leaders." [ESPN]
The Celtics guard tweeted out that only three people were arrested and Brown followed it up with another tweet asking for their names.

The protest was just one of many that took place around the country on Saturday.

Joel Pavón

Photo used courtesy of ESPN


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