Back in June, Bradley Beal and many of his Wizards teammates took to the streets of Washington D.C. to march for what they believed in, to support the Black Lives Matter movement and increase awareness of inequality.
So Brad respects the right to protest as much as anyone. But what happened in Washington D.C. on Wednesday, when a mob of American citizens stormed the U.S. Capitol Building, forcing their way inside during an attack that caused damage and left several dead, including a Capitol Police Officer, was very very different. It left Brad disgusted and wondering what would have happened had the people marching on the capitol, in a far from peaceful manner, been black.
Black Lives Matter protesters were met with force over the summer, while many of Wednesday’s activists were ushered in. The stark contrast left Brad emotional.
“It’s very disheartening in a lot of ways, because just the lack of sense of urgency there was to respond to what was going on versus protesters and Black Lives Matter over the summer,” Brad said. “That was a direct standout from all over the world. Everybody addressed the same issue.”
Brad is still a very strong proponent for the BLM movement and hopes that people around the country can see the contrast in the way protesters both conducted themselves and the way they were treated despite that varying conduct, because the difference, the lack of equality, is a snapshot of what the entire movement has been speaking to.
“We continue to fight the good fight,” Beal said. “We continue to get in front of these lawmakers and politicians and we continue to lay the hammer down to changes being made, but the biggest thing is the P-word — patience. Changes aren’t going to be had overnight. We have to understand what that looks like and what that means. Patience is going to be required.”