Over the last several months, Marshawn Lynch has probably been in the news more for what he hasn’t said than what he has. But when he’s not getting mobbed by the media, the Seattle Seahawks star actually says a lot of things worth listening to.
At a hip-hop show in Oakland, California, last year, for example, Lynch took the stage to plead with his hometown’s residents to do as much as they can to keep themselves and those they love alive. A video of the speech, obtained exclusively by TMZ Sports, was posted online Friday:
“I remember you motherfuckers, but I need to remember you motherfuckers, you understand me?” he asked the crowd. “You know what I’m talking about? I’ve been losing too many of y’all.”
“[I’m] representing where I’m from on the national motherfucking stage to be able to give ya’ll something to represent,” Lynch continued. “But I need y’all motherfuckers here for me to represent.”
Lynch’s love for his hometown is well-documented. "Everything about Oakland," he once said, "is everything about me." Lynch has created a foundation, "Family First," which aims to help the Oakland community in many different ways, and plans to build a community center in the city too. In an interview earlier this year, Lynch’s mentor and good friend Kevin Parker said this of the running back:
He goes to the high schools and middle schools and checks in on the kids. He feeds the community. He clothes the community. He gives back -- turkey drives, toy drives, coat drives. That gives you more love than anything you do as a football player. 'Cause a lot of people don't have TVs in Oakland -- they don't even watch him play football. But they know when there's a turkey drive, and they're lining up by the hundreds ... "Who put this on? Marshawn Lynch."
The city of Oakland has historically been one of the most violent cities in California, but there is reason for some optimism. The city’s homicide rate has dropped for the past two years, down to 86 total homicides in 2014, and nonfatal shootings dropped 13 percent from the previous year. Oakland’s overall crime rate is down too.