Los Angeles Lakers' star LeBron James has spoken out about social injustice for years. He is held underneath a microscope as one of the greatest basketball players in the world, but he is quick to remind us he is a human being first and foremost.
LeBron has constantly used his platform to shine a light on the evils and indignities of this world and has been a steady voice against racism while simultaneously promoting equality and change.
His opinions on societal issues and politics once drew the ire of Fox News' host Laura Ingraham who told her viewers that nobody cared about his opinion and that he needed to "shut up and dribble."
Local news from across Southern California
On Wednesday, New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees conflated Colin Kaepernick's peaceful protest of kneeling during the national anthem to "disrespect for the flag," and by extension, the military.
Although Brees' is entitled to his opinion on the national anthem and his personal feelings about the military and our troops, by invoking the flag and the military in his answer, which has nothing to do with Kaepernick's anthem protest, he is not only misunderstanding the original point, but blatantly disregarding its original intent: to peacefully bring awareness to the injustice of police brutality against black Americans.
As I myself experienced on social media recently, there's a large portion of America who agrees with Brees thinking. Despite the fact that misinterpreting someone's intent to fit your own agenda is a slippery slope to say the least.
Nonetheless, Brees received immediate backlash from many players across the NFL, including his own teammates like Michael Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders, and Alvin Kamara. Saints' safety Malcom Jenkins was even brought to tears after hearing Brees' comments and explained in a heartfelt video on his social media why he was so hurt by them.
Later Wednesday evening, Ingraham was back on Fox News, this time to speak about the Brees incident. In a moment that characterizes the literal definition of hypocrisy, Ingraham defended Brees and his right to have an opinion on the subject of kneeling during the national anthem.
James was one of the first to respond to Ingraham's segment on Thursday morning, and rightfully so. In a Twitter post, James re-quoted the video above and said:
"If you still haven't figured out why the protesting is going on. Why we're acting as we are is because we are simply F-N tired of this treatment right here! Can we break it down for you any simpler than this right here? And to my people don't worry I won't stop until I see change."
Later Thursday evening, James took it a step further, releasing a video on his Instagram and on his "Uninterrupted" Twitter handle of Ingraham's words repurposed into a 30-second clip that shows the evolution of the words "shut up and dribble," into how police use the same words to justify brutality to black Americans. It's a powerful clip, and one that everyone should see. It's a perfect example of how to turn a negative into something positive and profound.