LeBron James has been more than a basketball player for over a decade now. His impact on the people of Northeast Ohio is obvious, but it goes well beyond that. Very few athletes are asked their opinion on global issues or those of social justice, and even fewer are willing to speak their minds. While James doesn't sound off on every issue, and is smartly judicious in making his voice heard, he is one of the most courageous athletes in terms of lending his name and brand to matters of social justice.
In the cases of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, James has chosen to vocalize his views.
We are, quite obviously, not going to debate about police violence or violence in our cities here. But where other athletes have chosen not to speak in favor of protecting endorsements, LeBron is brave enough to put his name in the arena. Speaking as a teacher who sees the impact of cafeteria workers on a daily basis, I also was impacted by the story of Philando Castile, who made a positive contribution on hundreds of kids every single day.
The loss of life is regrettable in every instance. Our nation is divided in ways that sometimes feel irreparable. LeBron James has stood up for groups of people who feel voiceless. He should be commended.