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Washington Mystics v Atlanta Dream

Source: Julio Aguilar / Getty

Athletes from every arena are using their platforms to raise awareness around social injustice in the face of another police shooting that this time left a Black man, Jacob Lake, paralyzed.

The Washington Mystics joined the protest in their own way last night when the WNBA team showed up up to play against the Atlanta Dreams wearing t-shirts with mock bullet holes on the back and the letters of Jacob’s name on the front.

Jacob was reportedly trying to break up a fight between two women when police showed up and questioned him. Jacob allegedly didn’t want to be involved so he walked away, but was confronted by police, who eventually shot him in the back seven times in front of his children in the backseat.

“We’re not just basketball players, and if you think we are, then don’t watch us,” Washington Mystics guard Ariel Atkins told the WashingtonPost. “We’re so much more than that, and we’re going to say what we need to say. And people need to hear that. If they don’t support that, I’m fine with that.

“These moments are so much more bigger than us. … If we do this unified as a league, it looks different. … We matter. I think that’s important. I’m tired of telling people that. I know I matter. We know we matter. … If you have a problem with me saying Black Lives Matter, you need to check your privilege. Yes, all lives matter, including the Black lives we’re talking about.”

The Milwaukee Bucks went on strike, earlier this week, after deciding not to play in the wake of the Kenosha shooting. The bold protest led to the NBA postponing all of its playoff games.

While some fans applauded the team for standing up for equality, NBA player Draymond Green doesn’t see why sports have to stop in the midst of social injustice. We digress. Either way, both instances of protests have raised mainstream awareness of the shooting. With the world still fighting for justice following the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, one would think these cops would learn yet they prove again and again they are incompetent with it comes to protecting and serving.

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