LeBron James took a moment on Tuesday night to clarify his position on violence against police officers.
The Los Angeles Lakers star has been accused by some of exacerbating tensions between members of the community and police, so he decided to set the record straight.
“I’ve never in my 35 years ever condoned violence,” he said.
“Never have. But I also know what’s right is right and what’s wrong is wrong, and I grew up in the inner city in a Black community in what we call the hood or the ghetto, however you want to picture it,” he continued.
“And I’ve seen a lot of counts first hand of a lot of Black people being racially profiled because of our color. And I’ve seen it throughout my whole life.
“And I’m not saying that all cops are bad because I actually — throughout high school and things of that nature and I’m around them all the time and they’re not all bad.
“But when you see the videos that’s going on and you can see all over the — not only my hometown, but all over America, you continue to see the acts of violence towards my kind, I can’t do nothing but to speak about it and see the common denominator. But not one time have I ever said, ‘Let’s act violent towards cops.’”
Yikes Bill Belichick. https://t.co/9cgP6KjLmR
— Game 7 (@game7__) September 23, 2020
A few weeks back, two sheriff’s deputies were shot in Compton, California.
Critics accused James and others calling for police reform of inflaming tensions and indirectly leading to acts of violence against cops.
In the aftermath of the shooting, Sheriff Alex Villanueva asked the Lakers star to contribute $175,000 to the existing reward for the person who pulled the trigger on those two officers.
James responded by saying he had “zero comment on the sheriff.”
“I do not condone violence towards anyone,” he added on Tuesday night.
The numbers speak for themselves. https://t.co/dtIy8VeBQV
— Game 7 (@game7__) September 22, 2020
“Police, Black people, white people, anyone of color, anyone not of color because that’s not gonna ever make this world or America what we want it to be.”
James is currently in the midst of a playoff run with the Lakers. His team fell to the Denver Nuggets 114-106 on Tuesday night.
Game 4 of their best of seven series is scheduled for Thursday.