On Friday, the women’s basketball community was again forced to respond to a lack of justice. Kyle Rittenhouse was cleared of all charges at the conclusion of his murder trial. Rittenhouse killed two people in Kenosha, Wis. amid the unrest that followed the shooting of Jacob Blake in August of 2020, but the jury ruled that he acted in self-defense.
The unrest in Kenosha on at that time was over a police officer shooting Blake, a Black man, seven times when there was no need. It led to Black Lives Matter protests and Rittenhouse armed himself with an AR-15-style rifle to and drove in from Antioch, Ill.
Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr summed up the way many people felt about Rittenhouse’s “not guilty” verdict when he said Friday that the verdict has the United States “treading down a dangerous path.”
Of course, the women’s side of the sport had a lot to say as well, which comes as no surprise. When the Jacob Blake shooting occurred, the Washington Mystics led the entire WNBA to sit out in protest.
Here are some reactions on Twitter from Mystics guard Natasha Cloud, who was not with the team in 2020 because she was sitting out the season to fight for social justice, Mystics forward Alysha Clark, who was on the Seattle Storm in 2020, and Las Vegas Aces forward A’ja Wilson:
I can’t even begin to explain the sickness I feel. AmeriKKKas systems are fully functioning to protect and empower white supremacy in particular continuing to give white men this God complex; while simultaneously destroying and killing black and brown people.— Natasha Cloud (@T_Cloud4) November 19, 2021
I’m honestly sick of this shit. Coddling a white boy that crossed states lines with an intent to harm people with an illegal weapon. While Julius is sitting on death row being traumatized until the last 2 hours before his execution for a crime he did not commit.— Natasha Cloud (@T_Cloud4) November 19, 2021
I can’t protect my children from white supremacy. I can’t protect them from the police. I can’t protect them from the justice system. No matter how well we raise them, we can’t protect them. @ALESHIAOCASIO— Natasha Cloud (@T_Cloud4) November 19, 2021
Alysha Clark retweeted:
John Huber and Karen Bloom, parents of murderer #KyleRittenhouse’s victim Anthony Huber: the verdict “sends the unacceptable message that armed civilians can show up in any town, incite violence, and then use the danger they have created to justify shooting people in the street.” pic.twitter.com/zhfMCIsXIk— Ava DuVernay (@ava) November 19, 2021
A’ja Wilson retweeted:
The judge. The jury. The defendant.— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) November 19, 2021
It’s white supremacy in action.
This system isn’t built to hold white supremacists accountable. It’s why Black and brown folks are brutalized and put in cages while white supremacist murderers walk free.
I’m hurt. I’m angry. I’m heartbroken.
To the people saying, "This is not America," please stop.— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) November 19, 2021
Yes, it is. A place where a racist white man with a gun can murder protestors in cold blood protected by an entrenched system steeped in white supremacy.
Don't look away. This is your country.