Police Walk Off Court in Response to WNBA 'Black Lives Matter' Shirts

Illustration for article titled Police Walk Off Court in Response to WNBA Black Lives Matter Shirts

The Minnesota Lynx warmed up for their game on Saturday in shirts supportive of the Black Lives Matter movement. The front read “Change Starts With Us: Justice and Accountability.” On the back were the names of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling, as well as the Dallas police shield and the words “Black Lives Matter.”

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In a press conference, team captains Rebekkah Brunson and Maya Moore spoke about the recent shootings, their own experiences with racism from police, their admiration for the Dallas PD who have been implementing de-escalation training in their force to the benefit of all, and a call for accountability and change. They were flanked by fellow captains Lindsay Whalen and Seimone Augustus.

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The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that their shirts were not well-received by the four off-duty police officers hired as security at the game, who walked off the job:

Lt. Bob Kroll, president of the Minneapolis Police Federation, the union that represents rank-and-file officers, praised them for quitting. “I commend them for it,” he said.

Kroll said the four officers also removed themselves from a list of officers working future games. He did not know who the officers were. “Others said they heard about it and they were not going to work Lynx games,” he said.

Asked if other officers will fill in for those who quit, Kroll said, “If [the players] are going to keep their stance, all officers may refuse to work there.”

Kroll also took the time to be petty, saying, “They only have four officers working the event because the Lynx have such a pathetic draw.”

In all this sad mess, it did make me laugh to see that one of the top comments on the Lynx’s press conference video is: “The only team that can win anything in Minnesota lately!” GO LYNX.

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Screenshot via Facebook.

Contributing Writer, writing my first book for the Dial Press called The Lonely Hunter, follow me on Twitter @alutkin

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DISCUSSION

For fucks sake. I am trying very hard to relate to law enforcement perspective, but I am quite tired of being told to think about how their families feel not knowing if their loved ones will come back after work, and the stress that creates. It amazes me that they demand this while failing to understand how black families must feel wondering if their loved ones will come home alive, not even from working a dangerous job, just for the fact of who they are.