Knicks GM Scott Perry Says Protests Must Be More Than ‘Moment in Time’

New York Knicks' general manager Scott Perry speaks to reporters at a news conference in Tarrytown, N.Y., Thursday, April 12, 2018. The Knicks fired coach Jeff Hornacek early Thursday, making the decision shortly after beating Cleveland on Wednesday night to finish a 29-53 season. They lost more than 50 games and missed the playoffs both seasons under Hornacek. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Seth Wenig/Associated Press

New York Knicks general manager Scott Perry said he hopes the nationwide protests following the killing of George Floyd are not a “moment in time” and instead create sustainable change in police brutality and racial discrimination.

“Let’s not allow this to be just a moment in time,” Perry said Thursday, per Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News. “I’ve been around long enough to know that things that have happened in our history before—there’s a temporary outrage, and then boom, things are back to normal. Don’t allow this to be that time. This is a call of duty to action for all young people. And I would to you as well, you got to have confidence and belief in yourself.”

Protests have been ongoing for weeks across the United States since Floyd was killed in police custody on Memorial Day. Since-fired officer Derek Chauvin has been charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter after two autopsies determined Floyd’s death was a homicide. Video showed Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes despite Floyd telling him he could not breathe and calling out for his mother.

The killings of Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, among others, have led to a nationwide call for action against racism and for police reform. The Minneapolis city council is set to disband its police department, and several officers have been fired nationwide for unnecessary acts of brutality during the protests.

Perry said he hopes athletes who have joined in the protest follow up their words with action. 

“I think their words have to be followed by corresponding appropriate action,” Perry said. “The impact that words and actions of an athlete can have, not only for the people in their presence, but the millions watching them on television or on their cell phones and latched on to every word, action and emotion that these guys and gals share. And so I think really being in tuned to that, understanding that responsibility, and continuing to reach out to their communities in the way they best see themselves best impact the community.”

On Wednesday, the NBPA announced plans to increase its participation in the fight for social equality, including a police accountability initiative. 

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