LeBron James says U.S. president Donald Trump’s controversial travel ban “divides and excludes people.”
James is on the side of those who continue to oppose the policy.
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) February 8, 2017
LBJ vows to keep using his large platform to speak out on important issues.
Per The Hollywood Reporter:
“We all have a voice,” said LeBron James, accepting the NAACP’s Jackie Robinson Award on Feb. 1, center court at the Cleveland Cavaliers’ Quicken Loans Arena. Wearing an NBA-branded Black History Month T-shirt, James, 32, recognized the sacrifices made by Robinson as well as pioneering black athletes Muhammad Ali and Jim Brown. “I’ve got a long way to go to have the kind of impact these great leaders have been able to have,” James tells THR. “I hope to continue building on the legacy they started.”
“Diversity is what makes this country so great,” says James, who was raised by a single mother in an Akron housing project. “We should all continue to speak up and fight for ideas that bring people together regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, religious beliefs or any other differences.” The NBA is a global league; every team has at least one international player, with more than 35 countries represented and many Muslim-American players. And the league has been comparatively outspoken on social issues, initiating in December 2015 a campaign against gun violence. “It’s important that we as athletes continue to use the platform we have to speak up for what we believe in,” says James.
As protests continue to rage over President Trump’s ban on immigrants and refugees from seven predominantly Muslim countries, James has calibrated his message to encourage peaceful dissent through free speech. “I am not in favor of this policy or any policy that divides and excludes people,” he says. “I stand with the many, many Americans who believe this does not represent what the United States is all about. And we should continue to speak out about it.”