Amid ongoing protests across the U.S., the Ravens posted a video Friday that called for an end to racial discrimination in America and implored the country to put its history of unequal treatment behind.
Owner Steve Bisciotti, head coach Jim Harbaugh and a dozen players each made statements during a June 1 team video meeting, which was repackaged and published on the Ravens’ Twitter account.
Ravens united.— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) June 12, 2020
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“I’m lucky enough, through my ownership of this wonderful franchise, to have gotten close enough to these young men, to see and hear their hurt,” Bisciotti said. “All they’re asking for right now is to be heard and I want to ask you individually, are you willing to listen? I don’t think I’ve grown by seeing their anger. I think I’ve grown by feeling their hurt, and these young men are hurting.”
The protests began in Minnesota on May 26, one day after a video surfaced of a Black man named George Floyd being pinned down by a Minneapolis police officer. Floyd died after the officer kept his knee on the 46-year-old’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds.
Several Black players on the Ravens including Lamar Jackson, Robert Griffin III, Calais Campbell, Willie Snead IV, Anthony Levine Sr., Brandon Williams and Mark Ingram II spoke during the video about their experiences with racism in America and desires to be treated like the U.S. citizens they are.
“This is just one of my little girls,” Snead said while holding his daughter in his lap. “She’s also biracial and I don’t want her to have to live in a world where she’s judged by the color of her skin and she has to choose which side she has to go, the white side or the black side.”
White teammates Justin Tucker, Mark Andrews and Morgan Cox expressed their support for the Black community and stressed that they are using this time as an opportunity to listen and learn about the struggles minorities face in the U.S.
On the day the video was recorded, Bisciotti and the Ravens also committed to donating $1 million for social justice reform in Baltimore.
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