Celtics Players Pen Op-Ed In Boston Globe Directed At Gov. Charlie Baker

The C's are asking Baker to regulate the use of facial recognition technology


December 16, 2020

Boston Celtics players are doing their part in the fight for social and criminal justice reform.

And on Wednesday, they brought attention from Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker to one of their causes.

Members of the Celtics penned an op-ed in The Boston Globe calling for the state official to regulate the use of facial recognition technology by the police.

Gov. Baker last Thursday threatened to not sign a police accountability bill if it wasn’t amended to remove proposed regulation of the use of facial recognition technology by the government.

Here’s an excerpt from the piece, which accused the technology of racial profiling that leads to wrongful arrests:

Despite our positions and profiles as professional athletes, we are not immune to racial profiling and discriminatory policing. Police violence and racism are unfortunately all too familiar for many players of color.

This bias against Black people and other people of color is baked into the criminal legal system, and it?s perpetuated at every level, including the tools that police departments use. That?s why we were disappointed to see that Governor Charlie Baker, in his amendments to the police reform legislation, removed the bill?s proposed regulations of government use of facial recognition technology. Baker?s rejection is deeply troubling because this technology supercharges racial profiling by police and has resulted in the wrongful arrests of innocent people.

You can read the entire piece here.

The op-ed listed Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart, Kemba Walker, Tristan Thompson, Robert Williams, Daniel Theis, Semi Ojeleye, Jeff Teague, Javonte Green, Grant Williams, Carsen Edwards, Robero Langford, Tremont Waters, Tacko Fall, Payton Pritchard and Aaron Nesmith as having been involved.

Thumbnail photo via Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports Images
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