Michael Jordan Speaks Out On Recent Shootings of African Americans, Police Officers

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Retired NBA star Michael Jordan.

Jordan, perhaps the most recognizable NBA player in league history, usually avoids speaking out on social issues.

Michael Jordan on Monday released a statement addressing his feelings on the recent fatal shootings of African-American men by white police officers and the violence toward authorities in retaliation. 

Jordan, perhaps the most recognizable NBA player in league history, usually avoids speaking out on social issues, famously saying “Republicans buy shoes, too" when he refused in 1990 to endorse Harvey Gantt, who was running for senate against Jesse Helms in North Carolina. 

On Monday, that all changed. 

"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," Jordan wrote for The Undefeated. "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."

The father of the 53-year-old billionaire was shot to death in 1993. 

Jordan, owner of the Charlotte Hornets, who played most of his Hall of Fame career with the Chicago Bulls, said he will be donating $1 million each to the International Association of Chiefs of Police's Institute for Community-Police Relations and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

"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," Jordan wrote. "We are privileged to live in the world’s greatest country — a country that has provided my family and me the greatest of opportunities. The problems we face didn’t happen overnight and they won’t be solved tomorrow, but if we all work together, we can foster greater understanding, positive change and create a more peaceful world for ourselves, our children, our families and our communities.”

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