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Jets' statement on protests: We all must work together to make change

New York Jets chairman and CEO Christopher Johnson

New York Jets chairman and CEO Christopher Johnson speaks at the new uniform event at Gotham Hall on April 4, 2019. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

One day after taking part in “#BlackoutTuesday” by posting a black screen on social media, the Jets issued a statement in the wake of George Floyd’s killing while in police custody and other “senseless acts of violence,” and said, “Meaningful change can be achieved if we all work together.”

Following Monday’s virtual team meeting, Jets CEO Christopher Johnson, general manager Joe Douglas, coach Adam Gase, players and other members of the organization “discussed our ability to unite our communities.”

“We spoke about this unique moment in time, how we need to use our powerful platform towards positive change, how we can find ways to be more effective when working together, and how we must raise awareness and address the serious inequities which we have been painfully reminded still exist,” the Jets' statement read.

There have been both peaceful and violent protests throughout the country since the killing of George Floyd. Jets players Jamal Adams and Le’Veon Bell have spoken out in recent days about racial injustice.

Bell tweeted, “I’m hurt, WE are hurt, AMERICA is hurting, and I can’t even find words to express to you how bad I feel.”

Adams’ offered a powerful and emotional plea: “Over the past few days, I’ve been struggling with the pain from daily injustices in America . . . Stop killing us.”

The Jets are the latest sports team to release a statement about the current state of America.

“We have seen the many protests around the country, in our cities and neighborhoods which represent an expression of the passion, anguish and real-life impact on the social and racial injustices that continue to exist in our society,” the Jets said. “After years of so many tragedies which brought us to this point, we need to also focus on the powerful images of protesters and law enforcement working together in efforts to connect. America is a place where meaningful change can be achieved if we all work together to address the root causes and remedies for these problems.

“We will not waste this opportunity to create programs and partnerships of which we, along with the community, can look back on years from now and be proud.”

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