How the Junior Basketball Team Protests Against New Jersey Mayor’s Racist Comments – NBC10 Philadelphia
For weeks, the mayor of New Jersey has faced deep criticism for secret records on which he was recorded using racial insults. As calls for racial equality in the Union County community grow, recent action comes from a strange source: a youth basketball team from a rival city.
Former Gov. Richard Cody has coached youth basketball for nearly 25 years, passing the ball to some high-profile names, including Kyrie Irving and other professional players. Cody, who was state governor in 2004-2006, is now an open state senator.
So when the racist massacre in Buffalo shook the country, Cody wanted to make sure the voices of his young, diverse players at Roosevelt High School in West Orange were heard.
“No matter what skin color you are, we all need to feel safe,” said player Aaron Morrison.
The West Orange Knights 7th grade basketball team for boys will wear T-shirts with the words “End Racism” and “Equality” during the tournament in Clark on Saturday. This is done in order to send a message to Mayor Clark Salu Banakors, who was heard on leaked audio recordings using racist language against a community of black and sexist comments about female police officers.
“What the mayor said was completely wrong,” Morrison said. His father shared the mood.
“It’s important for kids to understand what’s appropriate and what’s inappropriate,” Mark Morrison said.
“If we see the mayor of New Jersey on tape using N-words over and over again but not resigning, it’s wrong,” Cody said. “It’s time to say, Clark, get rid of him.”
Banakorsa has since apologizedbut did not heed calls for his resignation.
“It’s a life lesson, and hopefully they’ll remember,” Cody said. “So if they ever face it again, they’ll be able to handle it the right way.”
Cody said he is not sure whether wearing T-shirts on Saturday will be disposable or whether the team will wear these T-shirts at other games.