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Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal Face Backlash for Saying Defunding Police Is Bad for Black Communities

TNT basketball commentators Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal are facing the outrage of thousands on social media, after the pair pointed out how defunding the police will harm black people.

Barkley went on a tear after the announcement of the charges of a single Louisville, Kentucky, police officer in the wake of the shooting of Breonna Taylor.

“Who are black people supposed to call, Ghostbusters, when we have crime in our neighborhood? We need to stop the defund or abolish the police crap,” Barkley said during the Thursday broadcast of NBA on TNT.

Barkley added that the real solution is to root out and eliminate the “bad” cops.

“We need to weed out the bad cops — you know I hear these guys getting on television these politicians talking about ‘defunding the police department,’” he said. “First of all, that would have a negative effect on the black communities — who the black people gonna call, Ghostbusters? Because they’re not gonna defund the police in the good white neighborhoods, so we need police reform.”

Barkley added that the Taylor case was being misunderstood by many because the woman’s boyfriend fired at the police first. And Barkley said that you couldn’t put the Taylor case in the same category as the George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery shootings.

Shaquille O’Neal added his voice to the topic and agreed with Barkley.

“I have to agree with Charles. This one is sort of lumped in,” O’Neal said. “You have to get a warrant signed, and some states do allow no-knock warrants. And everyone was asking for murder charges. When you talk about murder, you have to show intent. A homicide occurred, and we’re sorry a homicide occurred. When you have a warrant signed by the judge, you are doing your job, and I would imagine that you would fire back.”

Attackers quickly swamped Barkley on social media by users shocked by his lack of support for the defund the police movement.

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