KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Football players from Missouri have joined other college athletes in a push to end racial injustice by canceling a practice to protest the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin.
The team said in a statement that the players had the support of their coaches and wanted to “use our platform as college student-athletes to shed light on the injustices that are plaguing our country, and to help promote CHANGE!” They were joined by college students from across the country who didn’t practice and marched Friday in honor of the 57-year anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.
The team has a history of pushing for racial justice. Earlier this year, members of the team marched from The Columns on campus to downtown Columbia. And f ive years ago, members played a role in protests related to racial injustice that led to the resignations of the system president and the chancellor of its flagship campus.
“We refuse to ignore racism and police brutality,” the Missouri team’s statement said. “We are in the process of fostering change within our community by continuously bringing awareness to the importance of every single American, and to implement change in our government, law enforcement (local and state), and youth.”