Watch Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Educate Megyn Kelly On Why Black Lives Matter Exists
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From the July 26 edition of Fox News' The Kelly File:
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MEGYN KELLY (HOST): So let's just talk about the mother of Michael Brown, and then we'll get to what actually happened here on the stage, because she's been the most controversial choice, and she's the reason some of the Republicans are objecting, because her son was killed, but was killed after aggressing toward the police officer. Your thoughts.
KAREEM ABDUL-JABBAR: I think that that is really nitpicking. All of those women had really a tremendous amount of grief and tragedy in their lives, losing their children for no good reason. Even Michael Brown was unarmed. So, to say that he might have been aggressive, it might be true. I wasn't there. But I think the real issue is, why are police officers oftentimes so aggressive with black people, people that they don't know or don't understand, and they make conclusions and decide that these people are dangerous and they kill them with no justification?
KELLY: Let me just clarify the matter of Michael Brown, because there's a lot of confusion about this. He was -- his case helped lead to the birth of Black Lives Matter and the "hands up, don't shoot" mantra, which turned out to be a lie, according to the DOJ. And this is from the DOJ's report. They said, "Officer Wilson and other witnesses stated that Michael Brown reached into the SUV through the open driver's window" -- this is the cop car, "and that he punched and grabbed the police officer. This is corroborated" -- this is from the DOJ. "This is corroborated by bruising on the cop's jaw, scratches on his neck, and the presence of Michael Brown's DNA on the cop's collar, shirt, and pants, and the officer's DNA on Brown's palm.” The DOJ made it very clear that Michael Brown was the aggressor against a police officer who was just doing his job, and that he turned around for some inexplicable reason and came after that cop, even though he didn't have a gun and the cop did, and Michael Brown knew that. So, that case is very dicey. It doesn't speak to all the Black Lives Matters incidents. It's just the most controversial and it's the one that the police officers have said, "it's an insult to us to have the mother of an aggressor toward a cop included in this group of mothers who are the mothers of fallen men whose cases are much more clear."
ABDUL-JABBAR: I don't understand what you're asking me to explain.
KELLY: Whether she should have been included.
ABDUL-JABBAR: That wasn't up to me. I understand what you're talking about. My grandfather and father both were police officers. I understand that we have to conduct ourselves in a way so that all our police officers come home at night. They are the glue that holds our society together. But exactly why they included Michael Brown's mother, I couldn't give you the reasons for that. But I know that there are far too many examples, over a hundred -- in 2015, over a hundred black Americans were killed by police officers. And these were unarmed black Americans.
KELLY: Do you think that white society, generally, has no real understanding of what it is like to be a black man in today's America?
ABDUL-JABBAR: I think that white society devalues and dismisses the value of black lives. That's what the Black Lives Matter is all about. They seem to think that blacks are prone to violence and wish to harm them, and as soon as anything gets contentious between them and a black person, they pull out their gun and kill that black person, and that eliminates any problem that they might have.
KELLY: You're talking about white law enforcement.
ABDUL-JABBAR: I'm talking about white law enforcement. I'm talking about wannabe law enforcement, people like George Zimmerman who killed Trayvon Martin for no good reason. Trayvon Martin was just going from the convenience store to where his father was. Hadn't committed any crimes or done anything. Why is he dead?
KELLY: Why do you think that is, Kareem? Why are race relations so bad right now in the country versus, eight, 12, 16 years ago?
ABDUL-JABBAR: I think race relations are bad right now because things are changing. People of color are becoming more of a majority in our country. It used to be that the majority of people in this country were white Europeans. That's starting to change now, and I think that white people are starting to feel that maybe their sense of power and privilege is being challenged.
KELLY: Some. I assume you don't mean to paint everybody with that brush?
ABDUL-JABBAR: No. No. Some white people might feel that, and they might feel threatened by the fact that --
KELLY: What do you think is the way out of this? I realize this is more than a 30 second answer, but how do we start to get past it?
ABDUL-JABBAR: I think we start to get past it by communicating with each other, by having police officers and police agencies make a sincere effort to communicate with the people that they are supposed to protect and serve. And I think that the people in these communities that are having problems with the people that are policing them, they need to realize that if they show some respect and some restraint, police officers can meet them halfway, and we can go about the business of uniting our country and having a nation where all lives are respected and appreciated, and no one has to feel that they're being persecuted. Black Americans really feel that they're targets, and after all this insane, cowardly murders of police officers, I can see where they would feel assaulted and violated, and we have to get past that.