SALT LAKE CITY — On June 19, the day of the Juneteenth holiday that celebrates the freedom of slaves at the end of the Civil War, Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell sent a tweet that said "Free-ish since 1865."
Jazz head coach Quin Snyder said he was proud that Mitchell speaks up on civil rights and many important issues. Many Jazz fans were supportive of Mitchell but others weren't with some saying they would no longer support him as a member of the Jazz.
Mitchell spoke Thursday for the first time since making the post. He was not happy with the criticism. Here's what he said:
“The same people that were saying what they were saying are the same ones that were coming to celebrate and to cheer and I think that’s really where … I can’t lie to you, pretty pissed off. The past two or three years I gave it my all and then you see that and it’s tough to see that as an African American male, not only because what happens in Utah and I understand it’s not just a Utah thing, I want people to understand that it’s not like it’s just Utah, it happens everywhere, it happens everywhere, but like I said I spoke out on it and especially being because I play here and I live here and I want it to be known that I’m going to continue to use my platform, continue to use the voice that I have because I feel that that’s what is necessary. Hopefully this conversation opens a lot of eyes especially here in Utah because there’s a certain stigma, there’s no secret about Utah and obviously the comments didn’t help but for us as athletes we want it to be known that we won’t stand for any of the racism or whatever else comes with that.”