Los Angeles Laker shooting guard and future Hall of Famer Kobe Bryant is receiving tons of backlash today for an interview he gave to the New Yorker recently.
Bryant was bothered that so many black people, including those in the NBA, stuck up for Trayvon Martin right after George Zimmerman was accused of gunning him down without cause. Bryant said people shouldn’t use race-loyalty when trying to figure out if somebody is guilty or not.
“I won’t react to something just because I’m supposed to, because I’m an African-American,” he said. “That argument doesn’t make any sense to me. So we want to advance as a society and a culture, but say, if something happens to an African-American we immediately come to his defense? Yet you want to talk about how far we’ve progressed as a society?”
In addition, the 6′ 6″ guard said some African-Americans need to approach court cases involving other African-Americans with a little less emotion, and hear everything that’s happened before rushing to judgement.
“Well, [if] we’ve progressed as a society, then don’t jump to somebody’s defense just because they’re African-American,” said Bryant. “You sit and you listen to the facts just like you would in any other situation, right? So I won’t assert myself.”
Miami Heat shooting guard Dwayne Wade quickly chimed in, since the Heat posted a photo of themselves all wearing hoodies to support Martin after the shooting. He said because the incident happened in their town, they felt a certain responsibility to speak up.
“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 that Trayvon was in–but also having young boys,” said Wade.
“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.”
Image via Wikimedia Commons