NBA star Dwyane Wade calls Chicago’s gun laws weak after cousin’s death

Wade calls for officials to enact legislative changes to help both citizens and police in aftermath of the citys deadliest month of gun violence in decades

Dwyane Wade has lashed out against his hometown of Chicagos gun statutes, calling them weak and saying he has already advised city officials to legislate changes to help both citizens and police.

Wade also said his children are afraid of police officers the same style that he was when he was growing up, suggested that prison systems need to do more in rehabilitating inmates, and said that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump tweeting about the murder of his cousin last week left him with a bad savor in his mouth.

Wade spoke out to ABC News in an interview that aired Friday, the working day before the funeral for his cousin Nykea Aldridge a mother of four who was shot and killed on a Chicago street last week.

For our household, it was very tough, Wade said. The headlines alone mother walking down the street, registering her children in school, a mom of four gets murdered its tough to deal with.

Aldridge was one of 90 people murdered in August in Chicago, a city that has been ravaged by gun violence. Wade is returning to Chicago this season after expending the first 13 years of his pro career starring for the Miami Heat.

My purpose for being back in the city is bigger than basketball, Wade said. Basketball is a big part of it, of course. Its what I do for a living. But I guess my purpose at the end of the day is hopefully to come to Chicago and be a part and be the voice that can help bring people together.

Aldridge, 32, was pushing her baby in a stroller near local schools where shed planned to register her children when she was shot in the head and arm. She wasnt the intended target, police said.

Two brothers who were on parole for prior criminal activity have been charged with first-degree assassination in Aldridges demise. Darwin Sorrells Jr, 26, and Derren Sorrells, 22, are being held without bail.

Brothers
Brothers Darwin Sorrells, 26, and Derren Sorrells, 22. Photograph: Chicago police department/ EPA

Guys go to prison and then we let them back out on the street, theyre going to go back to what theyre are applied to and what they know, Wade said , noting that some members of his family have already forgiven the accused shooters. So if theres something we can do with the prison that can help with work programs when people come out, it gives them an opportunity to try to help themselves.

Wade has spoken out about social issues several times in the past, and said the three sons hes creating his two sons and a cousin are old enough to understand the questions.

My boys are afraid of police merely the same route I was when I was growing up, Wade said. Not all police, obviously. But my boys hear everything thats going on in the world, all the harassment, all the murders thats going on and they pose the issues to back to me. And what answer do I have for them?

Wade said tougher gun statutes will actually help the police, and continues to have partnerships with law enforcement.

On 17 September, Wade will hold an event in Miami to promote cycling safety and unity in the community, and Miami police officers plan to join Wade on the six-mile motorcycle ride to support the initiative.

They are opposing a war, Wade said of Chicago police. And they can do a lot better, but they can get more help as well to do better. Theres other cities that have way tougher firearm laws. We have weak gun laws.

Trump tweeted about Aldridges killing a day after the shooting, first went on to say that such an incident will have black voters backing his campaign and later adding his condolences to Wades family.

Wade said Trumps tweets left him conflicted.

On one end your cousins demise is used as a ploy for political gain, Wade said. On the other aim, its a national story. It goes back to that for me. I want eyes on this city. I want us to be able to do more together. The only way we can do more together is if more people know whats going on.

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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