NBA superstar LeBron James has developed a reputation for being a tenacious beast on the basketball court, but is calm and measured as soon as delivers social commentary on sensitive topics. However, James was heated after the events that took place in Charlottesville, Virginia where a white nationalist, James Alex Fields Jr., plowed his car into a large group of counter-protesters, killing Heather Hayer and injuring 19 others.
On Saturday, James seemed to suggest that the violence in Charlottesville falls squarely on the shoulders of President Donald Trump, writing on Twitter, “It’s sad what’s going on in Charlottesville. Is this the direction our country is heading? Make America Great Again huh?! He said that.”
It's sad what's going on in Charlottesville. Is this the direction our country is heading? Make America Great Again huh?! He said that🤦🏾♂️— LeBron James (@KingJames) August 12, 2017
The tweet has garnered over 89,000 retweets and 222,000 likes.
James is usually pretty collected in the face of adversity. When his own house was vandalized with the n-word back in June, James said it plainly before the NBA Finals, “If this is to shed a light and to keep the conversation going on my behalf then I’m okay with it.”
He continued. “It just goes to show racism will always be part of the world, part of America. Hate in America, especially for African Americans, is living every day. No matter how much money you have, how famous you are, how many people admire you, being black in America is tough. We have a long way to go … until we feel equal.”
After the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in 2012, James and his teammates on the Miami Heat donned hoodies as a tribute to the teen’s death. Following the death of Eric Garner, James, as well as many other players in the NBA, sported “I Can’t Breathe” t-shirts during pre-game warmups to pay homage to Garner. During the 2016 ESPY awards, James, alongside Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, and Dwyane Wade, gave a powerful speech to open the show calling for an end to “racial profiling” and a “shoot to kill mentality” from the police.
James has yet to elaborate on his tweet from the weekend directed at President Trump, but given the fact that he then retweeted former President Barack Obama quoting Nelson Mandela, it appears pretty clear what his thoughts are on Trump.