LeBron James wants to wear Eric Garner ‘I Can’t Breathe’ shirt before Nets game
LeBron James went on record to state that he loved the shirt worn by Chicago Bulls star Derrick Rose wore on Saturday night in protest of the Eric Garner case. So much so, in fact, he hopes to get one and wear it before the Cleveland Cavaliers play the Brooklyn Nets on Monday night at Barclays Center in New York.
“It was spectacular,” James said of Rose’s shirt, per the New York Daily News. “I loved it. I’m looking for one.”
Rose is one of many athletes who have expressed support of the protest involving the death of Eric Garner, who was placed in a chokehold by a NYPD officer and later died after his arrest for selling cigarettes on the street. The message on the shirt quotes words said by Garner. A grand jury last week declined to indict New York City officer Daniel Pantaleo related to the incident, sparking a wave of protests around the country.
If James does indeed locate a shirt and wear it Monday night, it will be in front of regal company, as Prince William and Duchess Kate Middleton will be in attendance at the game.
When asked if he really is planning to wear the shirt in protest at such a high-profile event, James said, “It’s possible,” per Cleveland.com, but would not say for certain that he would don one.
James previously weighed in on the Garner controversy last week when asked if professional athletes, or anyone for that matter, should speak out on such controversial topics.
“It doesn’t matter if you are an athlete or not,” James said, via the New York Daily News . “If it hits home for you, then you have the right to speak on it.”
“That’s why we have freedom of speech,” he added. “I’ve never shied away for something that I feel for or people or families that I feel for. That’s just who I am. But I don’t think we should add pressure to anybody, first of all, that doesn’t have the knowledge about it, that’s not educated upon it to speak about something you don’t know about. If you feel passionate about it, you speak about it. If not, don’t worry about it.”
As far as the protests are concerned, James stated unequivocally that they should be nonviolent in nature.
“It’s a sensitive subject right now. Violence is not the answer; retaliation isn’t the solution,” James said. “As a society, we just have to do better.”
(photo via The Score/Twitter)