Miami Heat baller Dwyane Wade responded to LA Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant’s controversial comments about Trayvon Martin on Friday.
There is no ill will or tension between the NBA stars, but Wade made it clear that he had a different opinion about his team’s response to the murder of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
In March 2012, Heat players posted online a photo of themselves dressed in hoodies along with the hashtags “#WeAreTrayvonMartin #Hoodies #Stereotyped #WeWantJustice.”
According to Bryant, it wasn’t right for the Heat players to rush to the slain Florida teen’s defense when he believes they didn’t have all the facts of the case at the time.
In the latest issue of The New Yorker Bryant said, “I won’t react to something just because I’m supposed to, just because I’m African-American. That argument doesn’t make any sense to me.”
He went on to say, “Well, if we’ve progressed as a society, then you don’t jump to somebody’s defense just because they’re African-American. You sit and listen to the facts just like you would in any other situation, right? So I won’t assert myself.”
Wade has responded and he feels as though Bryant missed the entire point of what the Heat players were trying to accomplish.
Before Friday’s game, he sat down with the Bleacher Report to set the record straight.
“It was our backyard, and being in our backyard, being something that a lot of guys on this team – not only growing up in the kind of environment Trayvon was in – but also having young boys,” Wade said. “Knowing that he is a big fan of the Miami Heat. That is something that we got behind. As a team. I can’t even say the organization. It was a team. We got behind it. And it was more so that than the color of his skin.”
“There’s a lot of causes that go on, that players get behind, and it’s not all Black causes,” Wade added. “You know what I mean? Most of the causes have something to do with something that’s near and dear to you. Like Chris [Bosh] writing on his shoe earlier in the year, because his wife is Venezuelan.”
Earlier in the year, Bosh wrote “SOS Venezuela” on his shoe to show support for the Venezuelan community in Miami who have grown concerned about conditions for their families back home.
After Wade’s comments were published, Bryant took to Twitter to thank everyone who shared their thoughts on the discussion.
“Critical or not. We’ve had a ton of convo the last few days about a BIG issue. That’s always a good thing. Luv to ALL who tweeted thoughts,” Bryant tweeted on March 28.
Prior to that tweet, he also added some more context to his original statement by explaining he wants equality on all fronts, not just for one particular group.
“One more time for the tweeting impaired this is NOT about legal debate or sides,” he tweeted. “It’s about equality on ALL fronts #colorblind #genderblind.”