MJ pledges two separate $1 million donations.
On a day when Carmelo Anthony is organizing a "town hall" meeting in Los Angeles to address social change, Michael Jordan has announced that he's donating $2 million to help bridge the gap between police and communities.
Jordan has largely avoided political and social advocacy issues during his playing career and in his retirement, so to finally see him take such a hard stance on these issues will have a tremendous effect on the movement.
“I applaud Michael Jordan for these donations,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver told The Undefeated Monday. “His championing of important social issues including fundamental civil and human rights carries enormous impact in communities everywhere.”
Jordan pledged $1 million each to two separate organizations that he believes will facilitate the change we need to see in our country. In the lengthy letter he posted on The Undefeated, MJ said he can "no longer stay silent."
"As a proud American, a father who lost his own dad in a senseless act of violence, and a black man, I have been deeply troubled by the deaths of African-Americans at the hands of law enforcement and angered by the cowardly and hateful targeting and killing of police officers. I grieve with the families who have lost loved ones, as I know their pain all too well."
“Over the past three decades I have seen up close the dedication of the law enforcement officers who protect me and my family. I have the greatest respect for their sacrifice and service. I also recognize that for many people of color their experiences with law enforcement have been different than mine. I have decided to speak out in the hope that we can come together as Americans, and through peaceful dialogue and education, achieve constructive change.
“To support that effort, I am making contributions of $1 million each to two organizations, the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s newly established Institute for Community-Police Relations and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. The Institute for Community-Police Relations’ policy and oversight work is focused on building trust and promoting best practices in community policing. My donation to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the nation’s oldest civil rights law organization, will support its ongoing work in support of reforms that will build trust and respect between communities and law enforcement. Although I know these contributions alone are not enough to solve the problem, I hope the resources will help both organizations make a positive difference."
Current NBA stars like Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Paul have spearheaded a movement by athletes to use their social influence to demand change in our justice system but there isn't a more influential star than Michael Jordan and for him to finally speak out and get involved in a cause like this will hopefully have a major impact.
You can read the full statement, which Jordan concludes with a plea to repair the gap between law enforcement and the African American communities, right here.