Athletes can always send a message, whether it is through their game, something they say, or something they wear. On Monday Night, LeBron James and Kyrie Irving decided to voice their opinions on the situation involving the death of Eric Garner by wearing "I Can't Breathe" t-shirts. The Cavaliers superstars were not the only ones to wear the shirts. Also wearing the powerful message across their chest were Brooklyn Nets players Kevin Garnett, Jarrett Jack, and Deron Williams. Garner was the victim of a chokehold that was applied to him by a New York police officer that eventually led to his death. The video that made it’s round throughout the Internet, has footage of Garner saying, “I Can’t Breathe.”
James decided to show his support for Garner, and his family by wearing a black shirt with white letters. The civil protest was done to pay respect to the family. James stated "How larger can it be than to pay respects to the family? It doesn't get any larger than that. Obviously our society needs to do better. Like I said before, violence isn't the answer and retaliation isn't the solution. As a society, we know we have to get better. It's not going to be done in one day. … We all have to do better."
James is no stranger to expressing his beliefs when it comes to these social issue situations. When the issue involving Trayvon Martin was solved in court, James who was at the time playing for Miami decided to wear black hoodies along with his teammates to pay respect for Martin and his family. When the former owner of the Clippers, Donald Sterling, made is insensitive comments towards African Americans it was also James who was one of the first players to speak out against Sterling.
LeBron will go down as one of the greatest players, if not the greatest when his career comes to an end. However, with the way that James handles himself and what he believes in he is also making a name for him off the court as well. Nearing his 30th birthday, James may simply be maturing into this outspoken activist for athletes. If that is the case then it will be one more thing that can be placed on James’ impressive resume.