The statement of Brady Campaign head Paul Helmke on their new campaign featuring Plaxico Burress is below. This campaign is being done in conjunction with the National Urban League and is called the Urban League Celebrity Empowerment Challenge. Burress said he is “committing his time and talent to volunteering with National Urban League youth programs that emphasize health, education and anti-violence, and pledging to recruit other professional athletes to do the same.”
I realize that Burress is doing what he is told he must do by his advisors if he wants to be able to play in the NFL again. This is similar to the stuff that Michael Vick had to do with the Humane Society of the U.S. To be honest, it is all a charade at portraying “redemption” on the part of Burress and his handlers. I just have to say it pisses me off to see the anti-gun vultures using him.
Paul Helmke, President Of The Brady Center, Remarks At Urban League, Plaxico Burress News Conference
Jun 13, 2011
NEW YORK — The Brady Center has formed a partnership with Plaxico Burress to prevent gun violence. Plaxico contacted us a year ago and told us that when he was released from prison, he wanted to spend his time warning young people, especially, about the risks and dangers of guns.
He told us that his direct, and painful, experience with a gun in a nightclub in 2008 had taught him a lot of lessons. It had taught him, ultimately, that guns make everything worse. And as time unfolded behind bars, his experience helped him understand that once he was free, he would have an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of children, athletes, and the entire sports community.
We’re pleased to work with Plaxico on this life-saving issue. The Brady Center is the nation’s largest public interest organization dedicated to ending gun violence in America. As a non-profit, 501-c-3 organization, we work to bring justice to gun violence victims in the courts. We educate Americans about the risks and dangers of guns. We fight in the courts to make sure strong gun laws remain on the books.
We have joined forces with people from the faith community, Hollywood, law enforcement, the medical community, education, and other segments of society. Today we’re happy to add another voice for our movement.
Children 15 years and under in America are 12 times more likely to die from guns than children in the next 25 largest industrialized countries combined. African-American children and teens are almost five times as likely as their white peers to be killed by firearms. Community violence, including gun violence, has the equivalent emotional impact on children as war or natural disaster.
Gun violence in America is clearly a disastrous problem — but it’s one we can do more to prevent.
America needs more voices such as Plaxico’s speaking on behalf of sensible gun laws and sensible behavior around guns. America needs Plaxico, other athletes and sports professionals, to be active in campaigns against gun violence. Plaxico will occupy a new and important place in this conversation.
He has agreed to work with us to share:
·His life’s journey, including how his decision to use a gun illegally injured himself, endangered many, and led to his incarceration;
·The lessons he has learned about the consequences of misusing a gun and the illegal possession of a gun;
·The inherent risks and dangers of guns; and
·The importance of abiding by gun laws.
We will have more to tell you about this partnership in the coming weeks. But for now, we are eager to see this man who has proven he can be a giant in football become a giant in the cause of helping save lives from being lost to gun violence.