Even though nearly 700, 000 Americans have coronavirus, there were early myths that African-American people were immune to the disease. Now as the worst pandemic hits North America in a century, we are finding out that coronavirus is hitting the United States hard and the pandemic does not discriminate.African-American communities in the states of Louisiana, Wisconsin and Michigan are just three that have been impacted to date.
Now one of the greatest basketball players of all-time is doing his part to raise awareness of just how dangerous coronavirus can be in the African-American communities throughout the United States. On Wednesday, former Los Angeles Lakers legend Magic Johnson sent out the following tweet:
“We are all in this together! I’m proud to partner with the National Basketball Association and the National Urban League to shine light on historical inequity and support COVID response efforts for families, small businesses and community organizations in communities of color.”
Johnson also sent out condolences this week to Jackie Cruz-Towns, the mother of Karl-Anthony Towns of the Minnesota Timberwolves, who passed away of coronavirus on Monday at the age of 58. Cruz-Towns had been a nurse at Rutgers University for 20 years.
Over the last week, Johnson tried to get his message that coronavirus does not discriminate in the African-American community on CNN. In fact he spent half an hour discussing race and coronavirus with anchor Anderson Cooper and medical specialist Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
In addition to raising awareness that African Americans are able to get coronavirus, Johnson is also trying to make people aware that coronavirus testing so far has been disproportionately in suburban America and there is not enough testing available to people in the inner cities where many African American people live. Johnson is also concerned that medical care is not accessible to all Americans either.
Johnson, who currently has HIV, won five NBA Finals with the Los Angeles Lakers (1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988). He also was the NBA Finals most valuable player with the Lakers in 1980, 1982 and 1987 and was the NBA most valuable player on 1987, 1988 and 1990. Johnson was then inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002.