Police Brutality and White Supremacy
The Fight Against American Traditions
Published by: Akashic Books
Imprint: Edge of Sports
An NBA veteran offers engaging interviews and reflections that explore police brutality, white supremacy, and the struggle for racial justice in America.
"Thomas's interviews demand careful reading by all who want to expose racism, hold police accountable, and create an American society that practices social justice."
--Library Journal, a Best Book of the Year in Political Science/Civil Rights
"The book is filled with thought-provoking interviews and commentary on police brutality, white supremacy, and the lack of racial equality in the United States. Thomas interviewed victims of police brutality and their family members to convey what they actually went through and allow them to share what they experienced directly."
"My family and I are extremely grateful for the support and love from my brother in the movement, Etan Thomas."
--Emerald Garner, daughter of Eric Garner
"I'm extremely grateful to Etan for continuing to shine a light on how police violence has harmed families across the nation. Our stories matter."
--Dr. Tiffany Crutcher, twin sister of Terence Crutcher
ETAN THOMAS, an eleven-year NBA veteran and lifelong advocate for social justice, weaves together his personal experiences with police violence and white supremacy with multiple interviews of family members of victims of police brutality like exonerated Central Park Five survivor Raymond Santana and Rodney King’s daughter Lora Dene King; as well as activist athletes and other public figures such as Steph Curry, Chuck D, Isiah Thomas, Sue Bird, Jake Tapper, Jemele Hill, Stan Van Gundy, Kyle Korver, Mark Cuban, Rick Strom, and many more.
Thomas speaks with retired police officers about their efforts to change policing, and white allies about their experiences with privilege and their ability to influence other white people. Thomas also examines the history of racism, white supremacy, and the prevalence of both in the current moment. He looks at the origins of white supremacy in the US, dating back to the country’s inception, and explores how it was interwoven into Christianity--interviewing leading voices both in and outside of the church. Finally, with prominent voices in the media and education, Thomas discusses the continued cultivation of these injustices in American society.
Police Brutality and White Supremacy demands accountability and justice for those responsible for and impacted by police violence and terror. It offers practical solutions to work against the promotion of white supremacy in law enforcement, Christianity, early education, and across the public sphere.
Featuring original interviews with: Steph Curry, Chuck D, Yamiche Alcindor, Isiah Thomas, Jemele Hill, Craig Hodges, Stan Van Gundy, Mark Cuban, Jake Tapper, Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, Sue Bird, Kyle Korver, Rick Strom, Cenk Uygur, Tim Wise, Chris Broussard, Breanna Stewart, Rex Chapman, Stephen Jackson, Kori Mccoy, Lora Dene King, Chikesia Clemons, Raymond Santana, Alissa Findley, Amber and Ashley Carr, Michelle and Ashley Monterrosa, Chairman Fred Hampton Jr., Abiodun Oyewole, Marc Lamont Hill, Officer Carlton Berkley, Pastor John K. Jenkins Sr., Officer Joe Ested, Captain Sonia Pruitt, and Bishop Talbert Swan.
Table of Contents
CHAPTER 1: RODNEY KING
Lora Dene King
CHAPTER 2: THE CENTRAL PARK FIVE
Officer Carlton Berkley
CHAPTER 3: GEORGE FLOYD
Pastor John K. Jenkins Sr.
CHAPTER 4: DEFUNDING THE POLICE
Marc Lamont Hill
Officer Joe Ested
CHAPTER 5: BLACK WOMEN AND THE POLICE
Captain Sonia Pruitt
CHAPTER 6: WHITE SUPREMACY AND THE US CAPITOL
CHAPTER 7: WHITE PRIVILEGE
CHAPTER 8: WHITEWASHED EDUCATION AND MEDIA
CHAPTER 9: WHITEWASHED CHRISTIANITY
Bishop Talbert Swan
CHAPTER 10: WHITE ALLIES/ACCOMPLICES
Stan Van Gundy
CHAPTER 11: SISTERS OF THE MOVEMENT
Alissa Findley (Sister of Botham Jean)
Amber and Ashley Carr (Sisters of Atatiana Jefferson)
Michelle and Ashley Monterrosa (Sisters of Sean Monterrosa)
AFTERWORD: Chairman Fred Hampton Jr.
“What do you see when you look at me?” a poem by Malcolm Thomas
"A relevant, occasionally eye-opening collection of Q&As on race and privilege."
"Thomas speaks with athletes, activists, religious leaders, and family members of victims of police brutality about systemic racism, exploring such topics as Rodney King, the Central Park Five, and the January 6 attack on the US Capitol. The strength of this book lies in its range."
"I admire Etan’s passion, tenacity, and commitment to fighting for our people."
--Ben Crump, Trial Lawyer for Justice
Praise for We Matter: Athletes and Activism by Etan Thomas:
"In We Matter, Thomas strives to show the influence professional athletes can have when they join the conversation on race, politics and civil rights. Thomas conducted 50 interviews, which included Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Russell, Laila Ali, Michael Bennett and Eric Reid, among many other athletes, as well as journalists, television personalities and family members of unarmed black men who were shot and killed. Thomas also explored his ties with the Wizards and spoke with John Wall, Bradley Beal and current majority team owner Ted Leonsis."
"Former NBA player Etan Thomas releases the timely and necessary We Matter: Athletes and Activism, in order to add useful, relevant words to the conversation on athletes and their activism."
"Thomas has spent his life examining inequities in America particularly as it relates to race and poverty. He's spoken out against war, helped Oklahoma prisoners write poetry and rallied against police brutality...But, Thomas says he's not alone: that social issues dominate what athletes talk about behind closed doors."
"In We Matter, former NBA player and poet Etan Thomas interviews a number of notable athletes, writers, and coaches in order to explore the world of athletes and activism...It is fascinating to read the thoughts of these figures that Thomas interviews and is a great primer on the intersection of sports and politics for beginners, while also containing much that will be revealing for those already well versed in these topics."
"Thomas interviews athletes, coaches, and sports personalities as he covers topics related to activism from the sporting realm and how it is perceived in America. A necessary read."
--Library Journal, A Best Book of 2018