LeBron James reacted to the news that Jacob Blake, a Black man in Kenosha, WI, was shot seven times by two police officers after walking away from the officers and opening the driver’s side door of his gray SUV on August 23. The Lakers basketball player took to Twitter on August 24, nearly 24 hours after the graphic incident was caught on cellphone video and went viral online, and shared his mounting frustration with the state of police brutality and systemic racism in America. “And y’all wonder why we say what we say about the Police,” he began his tweet, retweeting Attorney Benjamin Crump‘s tweet that featured the incredibly disturbing video. If electing to watch the footage, please be cautious as it is quite graphic.
“Someone please tell me WTF is this???!!! Exactly another black man being targeted,” LeBron continued. “This shit is so wrong and so sad!! Feel so sorry for him, his family and OUR PEOPLE!! We want JUSTICE.” The fallout from the police shooting was incredibly swift. After Governor Tony Evers identified the man in the now-viral footage as Jacob Blake, Kenosha citizens erupted into protest. Damage was caused to vehicles, windows, and the county courthouse, where a line of police officers in full combat gear were placed the morning of August 24.
As details continued to unfold, Attorney Benjamin Crump, who has reportedly been hired by the Blake family, alleged that Jacob’s three sons — ages 8, 5, and 3 — were in the back seat of the vehicle as their father was shot. Kenosha County Police Department has yet to confirm information regarding eye witnesses. Jacob was allegedly at the site of a domestic disturbance that officers were called to and was allegedly trying to breakup a fight between two women. Crump also represents the family of George Floyd, a Black man killed by White police officer Derek Chauvin after the disgraced law enforcement representative knelt on his neck for over eight minutes.
Along with protests, many on Twitter asked that the incredibly disturbing video no longer be circulated, citing the re-traumatization of so many Black citizens. As fallout from the incident continues to unravel, more public figures have voiced their reaction. Democratic Presidential Nominee Joe Biden released an official statement on his campaign website, sharing that as he and his wife Dr. Jill Biden pray for Jacob’s recovery after his intense surgeries at Froedtert Hospital in Milwaukee, he also admitted that for too long, Black citizens have not been given the fair and just treatment they deserve.
For LeBron, this isn’t the first time he has spoken out and reiterated that Black Lives Matter. On Aug. 18, he urged that the officers who killed Breonna Taylor while she was asleep in her Louisville home be arrested and charged for their crimes. He has previously worn Black Lives Matter apparel on the basketball court, as well. LeBron is currently quarantined in Orlando with the rest of the NBA players who elected to participate in this season’s playoffs amid the coronavirus pandemic.
HollywoodLife encourages its readership to seek out these resources to donate, volunteer, and stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and end systemic racism.