Dwyane Wade, Sports, and the Madness of Gun Violence

Dwyane Wade et al at 2016 espys

It’s all so sad.  It makes you so mad. And it’s gotten so bad.  And it makes no sense; none whatsoever. Dwyane Wade, NBA All Star and recent Chicago Bulls addition, tweeted this about the accidental shooting of his cousin, Nykea Aldridge:

The city of Chicago is hurting. We need more help & more hands on deck. Not for me and my family but for the future of our world. The YOUTH!” adding in a following tweet, “These young kids are screaming for help!!! #EnoughIsEnough.”

And earlier this summer, Dwyane spoke out against the deaths of young black men across the country at the hands of white police officers. The 2016 ESPY Awards show honoring the year’s best athletes and sports moments opened on a somber note, with Wade and fellow NBA stars LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and Chris Paul standing four abreast on stage addressing the recent shootings of blacks by white police officers.

Yes “BlackLivesMatter” but, all lives matter, right? No police officer should shoot an unarmed man or woman, black or white — or Asian or Latino, for that matter. And the life of Nykea Aldridge, cousin of Dwyane Wade, matters too.

The intersecting issues of race and sports and gun violence all collided in a head on collision yet again when a mother was gunned down on the South Side of Chicago. We know her name because she just happened to have a famous cousin who is an NBA All Star who just came home to play for his hometown team.

And so the question is, “Can any good come out of this?” Maybe, just maybe, more mentors will spend more meaningful time with young men like the ones who pulled the trigger. I know I want to mentor more young men, and the sooner the better. These young men certainly did not mean to kill another innocent bystander, a mother of four, but they did. Is it because they apparently had nothing else better to do? God forbid.

Here’s how the most recent incident of gun violence was reported by MSN:

“CHICAGO — NBA star Dwyane Wade’s cousin was an innocent bystander, police said, pushing her baby in a stroller near a Chicago school where she intended to register her children when she was fatally shot Friday.

Nykea Aldridge’s famous relative tweeted to his nearly 6 million followers about her death, saying Friday it was an “act of senseless gun violence” and posting Saturday morning that his hometown of Chicago needs “more help& more hands on deck.” Wade ended both days of tweets with the hashtag “EnoughIsEnough.”

The 32-year-old mother of four recently relocated to an area on the city’s South Side, her family said. She was near the school, which is about a mile and a half southwest of the University of Chicago, when two males walked up and fired shots at a third man but hit Aldridge in the head and arm. She wasn’t the intended target, police said.

Police said Saturday they were questioning three “people of interest” in the shooting but had no suspects in custody.

Chicago has been plagued by gun violence for years, especially in a few South and West Side neighborhoods. This July alone, there were 65 homicides — the most that month since 2006.

Wade, whose charitable organization, Wade’s World Foundation, does community outreach in the Chicago area, signed with the Chicago Bulls in July after 13 years with the Miami Heat. He and his mother, pastor Jolinda Wade, participated Thursday via satellite in a town hall meeting in Chicago on gun violence hosted by ESPN.”

DWadeinBulls Uniform

My cousin was killed today in Chicago. Another act of senseless gun violence. 4 kids lost their mom for NO REASON. Unreal. #EnoughIsEnough,” Wade tweeted Friday.


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