For the past several years, LeBron James has been a leading voice among professional athletes in the struggle for equality in America. He’s spoken out against police brutality, gun violence, LGBTQ rights, and has been a steadfast supporter of NFL players who have kneeled in protest during the national anthem.
LeBron has been a vocal proponent of Colin Kaepernick, who has been blackballed by the NFL for his choice to kneel during the anthem, and after Kaepernick settled a recent lawsuit he filed against the league for colluding to stymie his career, LeBron said that he hopes Kaep earned enough money to support his family for generations to come.
On the latest episode of the HBO series The Shop, LeBron discussed his admiration for Kaepernick and his willingness to jeopardize his career for the sake of his principles.
“Kaep stood for something that was bigger than him,” LeBron said. “How many people can wake up and say, you know what, I’ll give everything I’ve worked for my whole life, for the better of the conversation. I’m gonna lose everything that I got personally for the better of the conversation. And that’s why we can sit here and salute Kaep.”
Athletes past and present from all of the major sports have voiced their support for Kaepernick over the past couple of years, though it appears his NFL days might be a thing of the past. But if his sacrifice has laid the framework for future athletes to stand up for their principles without fear of reprisal, then it will not have been made in vain.