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Memphis Grizzlies star point guard Ja Morant caught Playing with a Handgun on Instagram Live for the Second Time
The Memphis Grizzlies super star point guard, Ja Morant, was caught playing with a handgun on social media (Instagram Live) once again. No, this isn’t a story from back in March of 2023 as Morant was back at it playing with semi - automatic weapons, and he got caught doing it once again.
The Memphis Grizzlies point guard was suspended from the team on Sunday, May 14th, 2023 for once again brandishing the blicky via social media, just over approximately 2 - months after being suspended (8 - games) for doing the same kind of thing back in March of 2023.
The Original Gun Offense for Ja Morant
For the original first - time offense, the 23 - year - old NBA star guard in Morant was suspended for 8 - regular season basketball games, as he Cliff - Noted his way through just several mandatory therapy sessions, and Ja was back on the court in time for the 2023 NBA playoffs to begin.
The 2nd - Gun Offense for Ja Morant
Morant received a whole lot of finger - wagging as well as criticism for the initial offense at the time due to how stupid Ja has acted off of the basketball court as the Memphis Grizzlies looked ready for a long and deep NBA playoff run.
Ja was headed toward a $200 million and possible more of a pay - day based on his All - NBA play throughout the 2022 - 2023 NBA season, but then the Memphis Grizzlies were immediately defeated during the 1st - round of the 2023 NBA playoffs, and Ja lost nearly $40 million due to the fact that he was left off of all 3 - All - NBA teams this year.
More Poor Behavior
But as much as Morant’s poor behavior and overtly stupid actions did deserve harsh criticism, that would have been the easy way out when it comes to judging and punishing the entire extremely unnecessary off of the court situation.
What it all comes down to was very irresponsible gun possession by Morant, as he has recently exhibited, it really can be as basic as a person acting very dumb. There does not need to be some pathology about the absence of a father figure as Ja’s father, Tee Morant, (who attends pretty much every Memphis Grizzlies game), “playing gangster,” or running with bad influences from the wrong side of life.
Between the first Instagram Live incident as well as the alleged punching of a teenager at the superstar NBA baller’s house, and the incident involving the point guard’s mother at a Memphis, Tennessee mall, one could argue Ja himself is considered to be running the absolute wrong crowd.
Morant, of course, does not as well as should not get off the hook for his aggreges recent behavior. His flagrant off of the court actions are the reason we are presently discussing this controversial topic, but zoning in on Ja’s actions enables one to miss the forest through the trees. Ja being reckless with a semi - automatic weapon twice is bad for sure, and doing it live on social media definitely demonstrates an undeniable defiance that if left not dealt with can and often will lead to even worse things for the 4th - year NBA - player out of Murray State University.
Guns in Today’s Society
The fact that it was a gun that Ja was waving around in the 2 - separate videos is the real cause for concern. Guns are dangerous, and but for the presence of them in regular American life, fewer people in the United States of America would have bullet holes in their bodies or possibly even be dead. There is no doubt that Ja Morant is a problem, but he is not the only problem in these unfortunate circumstances.
The problem is that guns and their prevalence in today’s society. The United States of America as well as their citizens loves guns! A study estimated that there are more guns in America than people, and that study was published way back in 2018 meaning that the amount of guns in this country must have increased since then.
That study was conducted 2 - years prior to the COVID - 19 coronavirus pandemic and global protests against white supremacy led to an astonishing number of firearm purchases of record levels these days. Firearms are in all of our most popular major media outlets. Firearms are nearly a protected class of citizen. On Monday, May 15th, 2023 the Governor of Tennessee, Bill Lee, signed a recent government bill that expands the legal protection for gun manufacturers as well as others in the wake of yet another terrible mass school shooting.
While gun violence is presently rocking the United States and the world overall as a whole, something that has become more and more common over the past 2 - decades, the line we are most likely to fall on is that guns do not kill people, people kill people. While that is technically a true statement, a gun cannot shoot itself, or can it? The presence, the celebration, and the preservation of firearms in America led to the countless mass shootings whether they were fatal or not.
Back in 2021, close to 50,000 - Americans died of firearm - related injuries (including suicides, homicides as well as other related causes), the most on record. That is over 130 - dead American citizens per day. Guns are the number - 1 cause of deaths to teenagers according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
In September of 2022, a gunman went on a killing spree across Memphis, Tennessee, killing 3 - people (wounding three others) in less than 24 - hours. A few months later, 200 - miles away in Nashville, Tennessee, a 28 - year - old killed three 9 - year - old’s and 3 - adults at an elementary level school.
The latter shooting was three weeks after Morant’s initial Instagram Live video. Since Morant’s first video on March 4th, 2023, there have been 3 - mass shootings (defined by the Gun Violence Archive as 4 - plus more victims, fatal or non - fatal) in Memphis alone. So far this year (2023), there have been eight mass shootings in Tennessee, including the Nashville, Tennessee school shooting.
According to data from the Gun Violence Archive, “As of Monday, there have been 225 - mass shootings in America this year, claiming the lives of 296 - people. As careless as Morant has been over the last few months, he’s but a symptom of a much larger disease. He is just a product of his environment. And not in the came - from - the - ghetto sense. He’s a product of America. An America that has an unconditional love of firearms. Even if you believe that responsible gun owner is an oxymoron, you have to admit there’s a wide gap between someone who keeps a handgun locked in a safe in the closet and Morant flailing around that thang for an audience of hundreds on Instagram Live … twice.”
With that being stated, Morant is a representation of America’s fascination with firearms (legal or otherwise), but because of his celebrity status, recklessness, defiance, and the color of his skin, Ja is not the visual representation of responsible gun registration and proper ownership of a weapon in the U. S. A. that our country demands especially in today’s day and age.
Drugs, Guns & Basketball go Hand in Hand
Morant, who let’s face it, is not the All - American white boy who likes to hunt or protect his family or whatever other excuses there are for owning and using a gun in this country in today’s climate of high racial tensions and chaos all around. Ja is looked at as just another black young ghetto boy from the inner city who brings back bad memories of the crack / cocaine - ridden -crime - era of the 1980’s and 1990’s.
Morant watched as the George Zimmermans and Kyle Rittenhouses of the world were celebrated, so why would he see a problem in waving a firearm around in a nightclub for his hundreds of live watchers? Black Americans understand the adage “rules for me, not for thee” as it applies to everyday American life, but maybe Morant missed that lesson. Maybe he thought he could be like the white politicians who pose with automatic rifles with their children for Christmas cards or aim shotguns at their daughter’s prom date for a campaign ad, but he can’t.
The last time the National Basketball had a particular incident with guns and / or other weapons on this type of level, one participant eventually ended up in prison for a separate, fatal gun incident, and the other, nearly 15 - years later, is still too early to fully understand why the league has no desire (no pun intended) brought the hammer down on him when he was suspended for 50 - games for bringing firearms into an NBA arena.
The National Basketball Association is now considering a “significant” or in other words a long - term suspension of Ja Morant to start the 2023 - 2024 NBA season. The league definitely should do that, but that doesn’t address the all - embracing problem when it comes to Morant and guns.
A recent news alert report that 3 - people were killed in a mass shooting in New Mexico. Meanwhile, Ja was hundreds of miles away in Memphis, Tennessee somewhere, suspended from certain team activities as he is likely seeking redemption yet again.
Morant’s Basketball Career Achievements, Honors, & Awards
- 2 - Time NBA All - Star Selection (2022, 2023)
- All - NBA Second Team Selection (2022)
- NBA Most Improved Player Award Winner (2022)
- NBA Rookie of the Year Award Winner (2020)
- NBA All - Rookie First Team Selection (2020)
- Consensus First - Team All - American Selection (2019)
- NCAA Season Assists Leader (2019)
- Lute Olson Award Winner (2019)
- Bob Cousy Award Winner (2019)
- OVC Player of the Year Award Winner (2019)
- 2 - Time First - Team All - OVC Selection (2018, 2019)
- OVC Tournament MVP Award Winner (2019)
- OVC All - Newcomer Team Selection (2018)
- Ja Morant’s Number - 12 Retired by the Murray State Racers
“The Ja Morant gun situation is not just about Ja Morant: The Grizzlies All - Star is a problem, but he’s not the problem. The problem is guns and their prevalence in society.”, Johnson Martenzie, andscape.com, May 16, 2023.
“Ja Morant”, .basketball-reference.com, May 17, 2023.