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Efforts to end racism should be applauded

We believe NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is rightfully being praised for his strong leadership and his passionate stand against racism and racist remarks, both on the basketball court and throughout our great nation. We wish to add our voices to the chorus.

In 2014, we have made many advances in eradicating bias, bigotry and racism in America. However, it is evident that in the 21st century, we continue to be challenged by people who would divide us and demean others based on their color, culture and heritage.

As Silver so articulately stated, it is time to act. All people must take a stand – in the classroom, on the street corner and in the boardroom – against narrow-mindedness, intolerance and bigotry. Institutions must no longer tolerate policies and rhetoric that undermine the ideals of our democracy. People of all races must be valued and have equal opportunity in education, employment and housing.

Silver and the countless others who have seized this opportunity to speak out against racism serve as role models for people of all ages, colors and creeds. They exemplify what we should daily demand of ourselves and our leaders.

The National Federation for Just Communities, the leading human relations organization in Western New York for more than 60 years, applauds Silver for bringing this conversation to tables in homes, offices, coffee shops and houses of worship across our country. Let us stand together with new resolve as we strive to achieve a just and equal society.

Lana D. Benatovich

President, NFJC

John G. Horn, Esq.

Amy Habib Rittling, Esq.

NFJC board co-chairs