LeBron James responds to Saints’ Drew Brees calling protests during national anthem disrespectful to the flag

LeBron James
UNSPECIFIED – MAY 16: In this screengrab, LeBron James speaks during Graduate Together: America Honors the High School Class of 2020 on May 16, 2020. (Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images for EIF & XQ)

Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that we are in a very tense time in the United States. The unjust killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis at the hands of four police officers has once again opened a seldom-closed wound that is the targeted harassment and killing of Black Americans by law enforcement.

People in all 50 states and in several countries across the globe have come together in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and to protest against police brutality, specifically towards Black people in this country.

Naturally, in the sports world, this has also reopened the conversation about Colin Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who famously kneeled during the national anthem before games to protest the very same injustices and has been blackballed from the NFL since.

On Tuesday, many people took to social media to show their support for the movement using the hashtag “BlackOutTuesday” originally intended to amplify Black voices in their current fight while eliminating self promotional posts. Among those to participate was New Orleans Saints’ quarterback Drew Brees, an action that immediately drew criticism due to his public criticisms towards Kaepernick at the time of his protest.

On Wednesday, Brees was given a chance to clarify his newfound support by Yahoo and had this to say:

Brees once again missing the point led to even more criticism, including from his own teammates and from Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James who took to Twitter with the following response:

James has obviously never been one to mince words when talking about social issues he is passionate about. In this case, there is an intersection of sports and Black activism that LeBron has often been the centerpiece of.

Calling out these types of aggressions is incredibly important and holding people who tag along Instagram trends but continue to fight against the progress that they are meant to support – whether actively or passively – accountable is a great way of continuing to educate people on how they can be proper allies for the cause. Brees’ black square on Instagram does not excuse his strawman arguments against Kaepernick, his focus on the respect given to the flag over the lives of Black Americans, nor his photo ops with Donald Trump.

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