Memphis Grizzlies rookie Ja Morant was forced to clarify his stance on police officers after an Instagram post raised eyebrows amid the NBA’s reported plan to allow players to wear jerseys with a social justice statement on them.
Morant, 20, on Sunday, shared an image on his Instagram story that suggested he was going to wear a jersey that read “F—k 12” – a negative reference against police officers. He added “nah fr [for real” to the post with a few emojis. According to the Commercial Appeal, Morant added in a since-deleted tweet that he wanted “dat on my jersey fr.”
However, the former Murray State star and current frontrunner to win the NBA Rookie of the Year award clarified his statement in a lengthy note posted on his social media.
“I want to first apologize for reposting something that didn’t clearly and accurately convey what I wanted to share,” Morant posted Sunday night. “My post was intended to focus on bad cops who get away with the murder of unarmed Black men and women and those who continue to harass peaceful BLACK LIVES MATTER protestors.
“I know there are good cops ‘12’ out there. I know some, and a few are family. I am thankful to the cops at Murray State who took care of me, and the cops who continue to watch over me with the Grizzlies. We NEED good cops to step up and make sure other cops are not abusing their power.
“There have been too many Black Lives taken by police that could have been prevented. You may see me as a just a basketball player and I may lose fans for taking a stand, but I won’t stay silent.”
Morant also called for justice for other African Americans who were killed in police-involved incidents.