LeBron James has added his voice to those of prominent athletes around the world expressing outrage over the death of George Floyd.
In a Twitter post Sunday morning, the Lakers star wrote, "Why Doesn't America Love US!!!!!???? TOO.
This isn't the first time James has spoken out on social media since Floyd, a black man, died in police custody in Minneapolis last week. A video of the incident shows white police officer Derek Chauvin holding Floyd down by putting his knee on Floyd's neck for more than eight minutes. At one point, Floyd says, "I can't breathe," before losing consciousness. Chauvin, fired by the Minneapolis Police Department, has been charged with third-degree murder.
— LeBron James (@KingJames) May 31, 2020
On Instagram, James posted an image of Chauvin pinning Floyd down alongside an image of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the national anthem, with the words "This ... is why."
James also posted a photo of himself Wednesday wearing a shirt with the words, "I can't breathe," which he wore during warmups for a game following the 2014 death of Eric Garner in New York. On Saturday, James shared reactions from activist and rapper Killer Mike and video clips from late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel and Ana DuVernay, who co-wrote and directed the Netflix drama "When They See Us," about the Central Park Five.
James isn't the only professional athlete or coach calling for justice in the wake of Floyd's death.
In an opinion piece published by the Los Angeles Times, Lakers legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar writes on institutional racism and people pushed to their limit.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in his @latimes op-ed:
“Racism in America is like dust in the air. It seems invisible — even if you’re choking on it — until you let the sun in. Then you see it’s everywhere.” https://t.co/4YgcmBNwFi
— Andrew Greif (@AndrewGreif) May 31, 2020
Former NBA player Stephen Jackson, who was friends with Floyd, has taken part in protests in Minneapolis. The 14-year NBA veteran called Floyd "my twin" while speaking during a rally Friday. "A lot of times, when police do things they know that's wrong, the first thing they try to do is cover it up, and bring up their background — to make it seem like the . . . that they did was worthy," Jackson said during the rally. "When was murder ever worthy? But if it's a black man, it's approved." In addition to Jackson, Minnesota Timberwolves players Karl-Anthony Towns and Josh Okogie attended the rally.
Stephen Jackson with just about the most powerful words I’ve ever heard pic.twitter.com/7guc6O4T6W
— Jon Krawczynski (@JonKrawczynski) May 29, 2020
Colin Kaepernick, whose NFL career dissolved in 2016 after he protested police brutality against minorities by taking a knee during the national anthem before games, has helped launch a defense fund to provide defense lawyers for protesters arrested in Minneapolis.
When civility leads to death, revolting is the only logical reaction.
The cries for peace will rain down, and when they do, they will land on deaf ears, because your violence has brought this resistance.
We have the right to fight back!
Rest in Power George Floyd
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) May 28, 2020
Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown led a peaceful protest march in Atlanta on Saturday. "I drove 15 hours to get to Georgia, my community," Brown told ESPN. "This is a peaceful protest. Being a celebrity, being an NBA player, don't exclude me from no conversations at all. First and foremost, I'm a black man and I'm a member of this community. . . . We're raising awareness for some of the injustices we've been seeing. It's not OK."
Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart explains why he took part in a protest in Boston on Sunday:
— A. Sherrod Blakely (@ASherrodblakely) May 31, 2020
In an Instagram post, New York Mets star Pete Alonso wrote "he will not remain silent" following the death of Floyd. “I will never know what it feels like to be discriminated against because the color of my skin. To anyone who faces this type of discrimination, I will fight for you and be an ally. I will always stand with you. There needs to be justice and change made for the better of humanity. Let words be our sword and unity be our armor. Take care of each other,” he wrote.
Clippers coach Doc Rivers released a statement Sunday on the protests:
— LA Clippers (@LAClippers) May 31, 2020
After scoring a goal Sunday, Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho removed his jersey to reveal a message of "Justice for George Floyd" on his shirt.
— Borussia Dortmund (@BlackYellow) May 31, 2020
Detroit Pistons coach Dwane Casey, who coached the Minnesota Timberwolves from 2005 to 2007, said Floyd's death needed to lead to real change.
— Detroit Pistons (@DetroitPistons) May 30, 2020
In an essay on the Players' Tribune, Washington Mystics guard Natasha Cloud writes that people who remain silent about the county's racial issues are part of the problem.
— The Players' Tribune (@PlayersTribune) May 30, 2020
Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores says the outrage people of influence expressed when Kaepernick took a knee before games hasn't matched their outrage over the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and Floyd:
Statement from Head Coach Brian Flores. pic.twitter.com/dJOdHHSvNT
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) May 29, 2020
NBA great Michael Jordan released a statement Sunday, encouraging people to collectively "show strength and the inability to be divided by others."
In a message on Instagram, Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton called out the predominantly white auto racing industry for staying silent "in the midst of injustice."
Rams quarterback Jared Goff was among the athletes calling for change in the wake of Floyd's death."My heart hurts for the country," Goff posted in an Instagram story Saturday.
Many other athletes reacted to Floyd's death on social media over the weekend:
I said what I said...and I don't apologize for any of it. If you're offended I probably WAS talking about you...I don't know what you think the solution is but here's what I'm going to do...New Post. https://t.co/APhXTxgKUG
— Tianna T. Bartoletta (@tibartoletta) May 30, 2020
My thoughts. Sorry if this offends anyone. All love ❤️ pic.twitter.com/9BbktIrxqd
— Logan Couture (@Logancouture) May 30, 2020
Just because it isn’t happening to you doesn’t mean it isn’t happening at all.
— NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ (@naomiosaka) May 29, 2020
It’s funny to me that the people who wanna wear chains, blast hip hop in the gym, attempt to get dapped up, and talk in slang are suddenly quiet right now.
— NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ (@naomiosaka) May 30, 2020
It’s curious the way I’m treated in public when I have a mask on and when I don’t. When I wear a mask I feel the tension that I have felt since i was a child. I can feel the looks I get of ppl who assume I’m a threat. But when the mask comes off and suddenly I’m not a threat
— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) May 31, 2020
Battled for days to find the words and I don’t know if I ever will find them. Not to appropriately give weight to the injustice and despair that our brothers and sisters experience and live in each and every day.
— Cooper Kupp (@CooperKupp) May 31, 2020
The Associated Press contributed to this report.