On Saturday, as violence broke out in Charlottesville, Va. at a white nationalist rally, LeBron James took to Twitter to voice his frustration and to criticize President Donald Trump.
James tweeted “It's sad what's going on in Charlottesville. Is this the direction our country is heading? Make America Great Again huh?! He said that,” and “Our youth deserves better!! Flat out,” on Saturday evening:
It's sad what's going on in Charlottesville. Is this the direction our country is heading? Make America Great Again huh?! He said that ♂️— LeBron James (@KingJames) August 12, 2017
Our youth deserves better!! Flat out— LeBron James (@KingJames) August 12, 2017
This is also not the first time James has spoken out politically. During the 2016 presidential campaign, James openly supported the Democratic candidate, Hilary Clinton, and appeared at a rally alongside Clinton and teammate J.R. Smith. In 2014, James, Kyrie Irving and others players wore “I Can’t Breathe" t-shirts before a game against the Nets in honor of Eric Garner. Garner was killed was by police in 2014 when he was placed in a chokehold. At the 2016 ESPYs, James gave a speech with Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade on violence and racism in America.
“If this is [going] to shed light and continue to keep the conversation [about race in America] going on my behalf, then I’m okay with it,” James said on May 31. “But it just goes to show that racism will always be a part of the world, a part of America.”
James was among a number of athletes who took to social media and condemned the riots where one person was killed and 19 more were injured when James Fields, a 20-year-old man from Maumee, Ohio, allegedly drove a car into a crowd of counter-protesters. About seven miles from Charlottesville, two state troopers were killed in a helicopter crash as well.