Shaquille O’Neal paid a visit to the New Jersey Statehouse on Friday to meet with Governor Chris Christie, a visit the NBA giant made in support of getting guns off the streets in his home state.
A native of Newark, Shaq said he wanted to visit the New Jersey governor to lend his support for a gun buyback program. The two met briefly, with Christie saying afterward that Shaq “had some good ideas.”
“We’ll do something with him,” Christie said.
The meeting drew quite a bit of attention as the 7-foot-1 Shaquille O’Neal towered over the not-so-short-himself Christie in a photo op. Shaq was escorted out of the governor’s office after the meeting through a crowd of people who snapped pictures and took videos of the two together.
Since retiring from basketball, Shaquille O’Neal has stepped up his involvement in his home state. He recently went in on buying a renovated theater in his hometown of Newark that includes an auditorium with a 47-foot screen.
Shaquille O’Neal has also gotten involved in law enforcement programs before as well. When the Los Angeles Lakers traded him to the Miami Heat in 2004, Shaq went to the Miami Beach police force and became a reserve officer.
When Shaq moved on again to join to Phoenix Suns, he joined the Tempe Police Department, again as a reserve officer. But it wasn’t just a fancy title — Shaq was actually assigned to the department’s Internet Crimes Against Children unit as a volunteer detective.
Back in New Jersey, his work appears to be more of an ambassador role, but it did seem to get Chris Christie excited.
— Governor Christie (@GovChristie) March 22, 2013
Aside from his work in the community, Shaquille O’Neal is still busy as a full-time analyst for the NBA on TNT.