Duke coach Mike “Coach K” Krzyzewski said “it’s time” for America to address and solve systemic racism.
Krzyzewski released a PSA on Twitter on Friday addressing the “easier wrong” for 400 years and that America has denied the impact of racism.
“Black lives matter. Say it. Can you say it? Black lives matter,” Krzyzewski said at the start of the video. “We should be saying it every day. It’s not political. This is not a political statement. It’s a human rights statement. It’s a fairness statement.”
Previously, Coach K released a statement expressing his anger and frustration after George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis.
Now the five-time national champion coach said supporting African Americans at this moment is a matter of humanity.
The Coach K Way
“We see that, and what do we do? We turn the other way, don’t solve the problem. The problem will not be solved and no problem is solved unless you acknowledge the problem.
“Acknowledge it. If you acknowledge it, you have the duty to solve it. We as a country have the duty to solve this problem.”
The impact of the protest movement has led to statues of Confederate leaders and more being toppled globally.
Three white men were recently indicted on murder charges for the February killing of Ahmaud Arbery, who was shot while jogging in Georgia.
Breonna Taylor was killed in Louisville, Kentucky, in March after police executed a “no-knock” warrant and shot the 26-year-old at least eight times.
An officer has been charged with felony murder after shooting and killing Rayshard Brooks in a Wendy’s parking lot in Atlanta earlier this month.
“Do we not see the problem?” Krzyzewski asked. “The disease, the plague that has been with our country for four centuries. Do we not see systemic racism and social injustice? C’mon. We all see it.
“It’s manifested in so many ways; criminal justice, the killings that we have seen and that we haven’t seen, the denial of economic opportunities for our Black community, educational opportunities, health care. It’s manifested in so many ways and has been for four centuries.”
A variety of college basketball coaches have vowed to create change. Many minority coaches have called for high schools and colleges to require courses in Black history.
John Calipari has promised to start a minority internship program in the Kentucky athletic department. A group of Big East assistant coaches has formed a coalition to address social injustice.
The National Association for Coaching Equity and Development, a group anchored by some of the top Black coaches in the country, has called out the lack of diversity among coaches, athletic directors and school presidents in collegiate athletics.
Krzyzewski has led one of college basketball’s elite programs since 1980.
“We, as a country, have chosen the easier wrong for four centuries,” Krzyzewski said. “It is time to choose the harder right. It is time to end systemic racism and social injustice.
” It’s time. Black lives matter.”