Sportress of Blogitude

LeBron Retweets Racist Messages: Wait. There Are Racist People On The Internet?

Earlier today, LeBron James, in an attempt to illustrate what he has been going through since he decided to take his talents to South Beach, retweeted three examples of the kind of depraved, ignorant and racist messages that have been left for him on his Twitter account. Via ESPN:

“I just want you guys to see it also,” James said after the Heat’s practice Wednesday afternoon. “To see what type of words that are said toward me and towards us as professional athletes. Everybody thinks it is a bed of roses and it’s not.”

While I am not in any way attempting to defend the ignorant, bigoted actions of the many mouthbreathers that pollute the interwebs – people such as those James is highlighting by retweeting their messages deserve to be at the very least called on it, although I wonder how much of a difference that makes – these people are clearly idiots and are best ignored. Still, does it come as any shock to anybody that anyone with an internet connection can spew their vile hatred at whomever they choose, in particular professional athletes who open themselves up to it by becoming proficient in using social media to connect with their fans? Years ago, fans (and haters) never had the kind of access afforded to them today and it should come as no surprise when provided the medium, people are going to utilize it to articulate their misguided, narrow-minded and hate-based world views.

I understand the point James is trying to make: no matter the situation, no person should have to read that kind of crap written about them. Unfortunately for LeBron, everything he says and does now is greeted with suspicion at best, derision at worst. I cannot help but think this is simply a way for him to bolster the claim put forth previously by James and his camp that all the vitriol directed at him due to his decision to sign with the Miami Heat was racially motivated.

But no matter. Ain’t nothing gonna break his stride. Ain’t nothing going to slow him down (oh no oh no). Despite all the negativity directed at him, LeBron is going to use it as motivation.

“You’re always going to have people who love you and who hate you,” James said. “I have enough motivation but I can always use a little more.”

Can’t we all?

LeBron James shares hateful tweets [ESPN]