ESPY’s opener includes lecture on race & gun violence, but viewers notice something glaringly missing

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This year’s ESPY Awards opened with a racially divisive pro-Black Lives Matter message delivered by four NBA stars.

“We cannot ignore the realities of the current state of America,” the New York Nicks; Carmelo Anthony said. “The events of the past week have put a spotlight on the injustice, distrust and anger that have plagued so many of us. The system is broken. The problems are not new. The violence and the racial divide is definitely not new. But, the urgency to create change is at an all-time high.”

The Los Angeles Clippers’ point guard Chris Paul followed up with the names Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Eric Garner, Laquan McDonald, Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, calling them “our reality.”

Missing from the list were the names Lorne Ahrens, 48, Michael Krol, 40, Michael Smith, 55, Brent Thompson, 43, and Patrick Zamarripa, 32. These were thew five Dallas officers who were murdered by a lone black sniper last week.

“The racial profiling has to stop,” Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade said. “The ‘shoot to kill’ mentality has to stop. Not seeing the value of black and brown bodies has to stop. But also the retaliation has to stop. The endless gun violence, in places like Chicago, Dallas, not to mention Orlando, it has to stop. Enough. Enough is enough.”

“We all feel helpless and frustrated by the violence. We do, but that’s not acceptable. It’s time to look in the mirror and ask ourselves, ‘What are we doing to create change?’” the Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James asked.

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The ESPY awards, short for Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Awards, was originally hosted by ESPN — now ABC — seems to be diverting from athletic achievement to a racial and political gripe sounding board.

That wasn’t lost on social media, and some folks offered a rebuttal to the players’ message.

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