The subject of police interaction with African-Americans has been a major topic of discussion nationally in recent weeks and months. Former Kentucky star and current Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins has his own story to share, as he recently recounted an instance from high school where he was “scared for my life” in an encounter with police in his hometown of Mobile, Ala., The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears reports.
“I remember it being after a high school game. Me and my friends are riding home, we hop out of the car at one of the friends’ house and (the police) pulled up on us, pulled guns on us and everything,” Cousins said, according to the report. “The only reason we were good was because we were wearing our school hoodies that read, LeFlore High School. ‘Sir, we are just leaving our high school game.’ ‘What’s your name?’ ‘I’m DeMarcus Cousins.’
“‘You’re the young kid from …’ ‘Yes, that’s me. We are just going home.’ I was scared for my life. We had rifles pulled on us.”
But Cousins understands his experience isn’t indicative of all police. In fact, he has a friend and mentor on the police force from Mobile. That friendship, Cousins said, has helped him understand the difficulties of being a police officer.
“I’ve learned about both sides,” Cousins said. “I respect (my friend). I just had dinner with him the other day in Vegas. Me and his son grew up playing basketball together. … I know there are good (police). I know that there are not good ones.
“He told me the truth, which I respect. The truth is there are good and bad. We know that. That’s the case in a lot of situations. It’s not just with (police officers). It’s throughout the world.”
In the end, Cousins said, he just wants people to strive for unity.
“We’re just trying to connect the two,” Cousins said. “We’re trying to show people it’s OK to be united. It’s OK to be a good person. It’s OK to try to better yourself every day.”