Carmelo Anthony Drops Limited-Edition Merch Collection to Support the NAACP Legal Defense Fund
Carmelo Anthony is giving back to the Black community amid protests and social unrest across the country following the killing of George Floyd at the hands of Minnesota police officers last week.
On Friday, the NBA player — who often uses his platform to speak out against racial inequality and police brutality — launched a limited-edition merch collection under his new STAYME70 line, with 100 percent of profits going towards the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.
The Legal Defense Fund fights racial injustice through litigation, advocacy and social education, according to the nonprofit organization's website. It also "defends the gains and protections won over the past 75 years of civil rights struggle and works to improve the quality and diversity of judicial and executive appointments."
The STAYME70 drop includes a hoodie ($65), a crewneck sweatshirt ($60), a T-shirt ($30) and a candle ($25). All four products, available now on mel0-merchandise.shopify.com, are embossed with the STAYME70 logo and reflect the NBA pro's ongoing mission to end social injustice.
Anthony teased STAYME70 on Twitter last month, writing, “Coming soon…” alongside a graphic with the words “BE UNIQUE. EMBRACE ADVERSITY. GO AFTER YOUR DREAMS. LIVE LARGE. STAY STRONG.”
The brand name is seemingly inspired by his nickname ("Melo") and the jersey number (7) he wore for several years while playing for the New York Knicks, the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets.
Over the course of his career, Anthony has turned ME7O into a signature part of his brand by using it as hashtag on social media.
So much so that when the NBA veteran revealed last year that he would be wearing a new number, 00, as an official member of the Portland Trailblazers, he assured fans and followers on Instagram, “I will always be 7," adding the hashtag "#007."
Anthony's merch launch comes after he pleaded "JUSTICE FOR GEORGE" on Instagram last week in an impassioned post slamming systematic racism: "Not Everything That Is Faced Can Be Changed, But Nothing can be changed UNTIL ITS FACED!" the star wrote alongside a photo of Black Lives Matter protesters.
On May 25, Floyd was killed while in custody for allegedly using a counterfeit bill to make a purchase at a store. Video of Floyd's killing went viral, triggering nationwide protests demanding racial equality and calling for an end to police brutality.
In the footage, Floyd can be seen gasping for air for several minutes, beneath the weight of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who was pressing his knee into George's neck.
On Wednesday, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison amended the initial third-degree murder charge against Chauvin to include second-degree unintentional murder. Chauvin is also charged with manslaughter.
Three other officers at the scene — Thomas Lane, 37; Tou Thao, 34; and J. Alexander Kueng, 26 — were were also charged Wednesday with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
To help combat systemic racism, consider learning from or donating to these organizations:
•Campaign Zero (joincampaignzero.org) which works to end police brutality in America through research-proven strategies.
• ColorofChange.org works to make government more responsive to racial disparities.
•National Cares Mentoring Movement (caresmentoring.org) provides social and academic support to help black youth succeed in college and beyond.
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