LeBron James is on a mission in his quest to bring about social justice.
The Cleveland Cavaliers superstar tells GQ magazine he feels speaking up for social responsibility is part of his overall responsibility as a leader and role model.
“I believe that I was put here for a higher cause,” James said. “We have people, not only today but over the course of time, that have been in the higher positions that chose to do it and chose not to do it.”
The three-time NBA champion and four-time league MVP said his motivation for being one of those to carry the baton has nothing to do with seeking more attention or fame for himself.
“I don’t think it’s right or wrong,” James said of how other stars decide to handle the situation. “If it’s in you, and if it’s authentic, then do it. If it’s some fake sh–, then the people, the kids, they’re going to notice it. They know.”
For all his aplomb and celebrity, James said he sometimes wonders just how much he can truly be loved by all his hometown fans in Cleveland, given the state recently voted for Donald Trump as president.
James has previously derided the president as trying to “divide us” and a “bum.”
“I think, um, they can love what LeBron James does,” he said. “Do they know what LeBron James completely represents? I don’t think so. So those people may love the way I play the game of basketball, because they might have some grandkids, you know, they might have a son or a daughter or a niece that no matter what they’re talking about, the kids are like, ‘LeBron is LeBron. And I don’t give a damn what you talking about. I love him.’ So they don’t have a choice liking me.”
Sports Illustrated reports during the team’s season-opening 102-99 win over Kyrie Irving and the Boston Celtics at Quicken Loans Arena, James donned shoes bearing the word “equality.”
It’s all in keeping with what James vowed he would do when the team held its media day just weeks earlier.
Back then, James vowed to use all his celebrity, influence, and financial resources to do all he can to bring about greater social justice and to call greater attention to what he sees as society’s many imbalances.
During Tuesday night’s game, Cavs’ players also locked arms during the playing of the national anthem. Throughout the NFL season, some players and teams have faced backlash over players kneeling during the national anthem as a form of protest.
[Featured Image by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images]