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Michael Jordan: 'I Can No Longer Stay Silent' On Police Shootings, Violence Against Police

LOS ANGELES ( — NBA legend Michael Jordan took the unusual step Monday of wading into the public debate about police shootings and violence against police.

His statements follow the fatal shootings by police of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge and Philando Castile in Minneapolis, as well as the recent shootings of police officers in Baton Rouge and Dallas.

Jordan, who is typically tight-lipped about social issues, said he felt compelled to publish his thoughts on The Undefeated in part because he lost his father in a 1993 shooting. Other NBA stars, including LeBron James, have also recently spoken about police shootings.

"I have been deeply troubled by the deaths of African-Americans at the hands of law enforcement and angered by the cowardly and hateful targeting and killing of police officers. I grieve with the families who have lost loved ones, as I know their pain all too well," he wrote. "I was raised by parents who taught me to love and respect people regardless of their race or background, so I am saddened and frustrated by the divisive rhetoric and racial tensions that seem to be getting worse as of late. I know this country is better than that, and I can no longer stay silent."

Jordan said he hopes the U.S. can "find solutions that ensure people of color receive fair and equal treatment AND  that police officers – who put their lives on the line every day to protect us all – are respected and supported."

Jordan said he's donating $2 million to support those goals.

The money is split between the International Association of Chiefs of Police's Institute for Community-Police Relations, whose "work is focused on building trust and promoting best practices in community policing," Jordan said, and the civil rights law organization, NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

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