Los Angeles – Women’s tennis star Naomi Osaka, an outspoken critic of racial injustice, expressed dismay Tuesday that the conviction of a white police officer in the United States for killing a Black man was in doubt.
The video footage of Minnesota police officer Derrick Chauvin kneeling on the neck of George Floyd last summer until he died intensified outrage and sparked worldwide demonstrations against police brutality directed toward Black Americans.
Osaka, posting on Twitter, called the decision to convict “clear as day,” but said she could not celebrate out of sadness due the fact that the verdict was in doubt in a nation where police violence against Black Americans routinely goes unchecked.
“The fact that so many injustices occurred to make us hold our breath toward this outcome is really telling,” wrote Osaka, who at last year’s U.S. Open wore masks bearing Floyd’s name and as well the names of others who died at the hands of police.
Osaka, whose mother is Japanese and father is Haitian, was born in Japan but grew up in the United States.
The NBA and its players association released a joint statement after the verdict that read, “We are pleased to see justice has been served…and will redouble our efforts to advocate for meaningful change in the areas of criminal justice and policing.”
Major League Baseball’s statement read: “In the wake of today’s verdict, Major League Baseball hopes to contribute to the healing process by continuing to work with our players…to advance the values of social justice, equality, diversity and inclusion.”
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