LeBron James tweeted on Sunday in response to nationwide protests after the killing of George Floyd.
Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was arrested and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter over the death of Floyd. Video taken Monday showed Chauvin kneeling on Floyd's neck despite Floyd saying he could not breathe. Chauvin's arrest came after Minneapolis citizens took to the streets in protests that turned violent. Three other officers involved in Floyd's death were fired but have yet to be charged.
Protests and acts of civil unrest continued across the country throughout the weekend.
"We condemn racism, bigotry, violence and prejudice in all its forms," the Lakers said in a statement. "Everyone has the right to live free from fear and to be treated with dignity and respect. We hear the pain of our Black community and we will not stay silent."
James previously made a pair of Instagram posts regarding Floyd's death, including one depicting Chauvin choking Floyd next to a picture of Colin Kaepernick kneeling that said, "This is why."
"Do you understand NOW!!??!!?? Or is it still blurred to you??" James' caption read.
"I drove 15 hours to get to Georgia, my community," Brown said at the protest. "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."
Former NBA swingman Stephen Jackson had a close personal friendship with Floyd, who he called his "twin." Jackson, joined by Timberwolves forward Karl-Anthony Towns, spoke at a Minneapolis rally Friday.
"I'm here because they're not gonna demean the character of George Floyd, my twin," Jackson said. "A lot of times, when police do things they know that's wrong, the first thing they try to do is cover it up, and bring up their background—to make it seem like the bulls--t that they did was worthy. When was murder ever worthy? But if it's a black man, it's approved.
"You can't tell me, when that man has his knee on my brother's neck—taking his life away, with his hand in his pocket—that that smirk on his face didn't say, 'I'm protected.' You can't tell me that he didn't feel that it was his duty to murder my brother, and that he knew he was gonna get away with it. You can't tell me that wasn't the look on his face."