Back in 2014, five Rams players put up their hands in the “don’t shoot” pose to show solidarity with their community as it went through a similar situation that we find ourselves in today. At that time, they were showing support for the protesters in Ferguson, Missouri after the killing of Michael Brown.
Now with the killing of George Floyd by former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, it is a shame to see that we are still seeing these actions unfold in communities across the country. Moving forward I have to think that we will be seeing more acts of protest in the upcoming NFL season.
The question now remains, how are the teams going to handle these actions? In a recent interview with Sean McVay, Greg Beacham of the Associated Press reported that McVay stated that he held a meeting with the team. Many other teams around the league also conducted similar meetings too. McVay wanted to hear what his team had to say about this situation and their own personal experiences. He was quoted as saying the meeting was “an amazing learning experience for him.”
Sean McVay says he would support his players if they decided to make an on-field public demonstration. Before McVay's time with the team, 5 Rams did just that in St. Louis in 2014 during the Ferguson protests. pic.twitter.com/F0a65xJ2Z5
— Greg Beacham (@gregbeacham) June 2, 2020
Personally speaking, that’s the action of a true leader and is exactly what you want to hear from a young white man during these times. It’s McVay’s job to lead and unite a group of young men from all walks of life. He even went as far to say that he would support his players if they chose to do any on-field demonstrations in the upcoming season.
If McVay holds true to his word and stands with his team during such a demonstration, that would send shock waves throughout the NFL and throughout the country. This is what the world needs to see right now. They need to see a white man with power/leadership showing compassion for his fellow people regardless of their background or the color of their skin. They need to see how a team truly unites under a true leader. Leadership does more than just makes speeches, they also listen, which McVay has demonstrated in these meetings.
Only time will tell if we will see another peaceful demonstration like we did back in St. Louis in 2014. I personally like to think that the team will rally around each other, build up the community in L.A., and move towards a better tomorrow. It has to get better and people with a platform like McVay’s need to speak up and speak out against injustice in their communities.