LeBron James: A picture of Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys

LeBron James: A picture of Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys, attending a racial desegregation demonstration in 1957, has the NBA star questioning how the media handles racial issues.

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When LeBron James asked reporters on Wednesday why he hadn’t gotten any questions about a picture of Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys, attending a racial desegregation protest in 1957, he had race and its historical legacy in the US on his mind.

The black and white image depicts a 14-year-old Jones peering over as six Black students sought to enter North Little Rock High School in 1957 while a group of White students attempted to block them. The image was featured in a piece by the Washington Post last week.

James addressed the crowd following the Los Angeles Lakers’ 128-109 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. “I got one question for you guys before you guys leave,” he said.

“I was wondering why I haven’t heard from you guys about the Jerry Jones photo while I was on my way over here.

But when the Kyrie [Irving] situation was active, you people approached us with inquiries about it.

Brooklyn Nets star Irving was given an eight-game suspension last month after he failed to apologise for posting a link to an antisemitic documentary on his Twitter profile.

After apologising repeatedly and stating that he doesn’t “stand for anything akin to hate speech or antisemitism,” the 30-year-old Irving returned to court on November 20.

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“It’s a question that is asked daily.”
Lebron compared the way the media handled the 1957 photograph, saying, “It feels like it’s just been buried,” to the regular media attention Irving’s post received.

James stated, “We’re talking about my people and the struggles we’ve faced, and that Jerry Jones photo is one of those moments that our people, Black people, have experienced in America.”.

“I feel that as a Black man, a Black athlete, and as someone with authority and a platform, when we do anything bad or something that people don’t like, it’s in every tabloid and on every news report’s bottom ticker. Every day, questions regarding it are raised.

The 37-year-old James stated, “It seems to me that the entire Jerry Jones problem photo – and I know it was years and years ago and we all make errors, I get it. But we simply continue.

When questioned about the image after the Washington Post published it, Jones told reporters he was a curious young man and had no idea how significant the event actually was.

According to ESPN, Jones stated, “I didn’t know at the time the tremendous event actually that was going on.”

“I’m so pleased that has long since passed. I am. That would serve as a reminder to me to keep doing everything in our power to prevent such kinds of things from happening.

Vocal advocate for social justice
When asked about Irving in November, five-time NBA champion James responded, “I think what Kyrie did hurt a lot of people. He has since apologised, most recently (today, or was it yesterday). But he did some damage.

“I don’t respect it if you are promoting or soliciting, or saying bad things to any community that injure people. It doesn’t matter what colour your skin is, how tall you are, or what position you are in. I do not support it.

James, a former ardent Dallas Cowboys supporter, recently declared that he had switched to the Cleveland Browns as a result of the Cowboys’ policy, reiterated by Jones, that players must stand for the playing of the national anthem while athletes all over the nation were kneeling in protest of social and racial injustice.

James, a former NBA player and longtime friend and business partner of Maverick Carter, stated during an Instagram Live talk with Carter, “It’s just a lot of stuff that were going on during the, you know, when guys were kneeling.”

“Many people in their front office and among those in charge of the organisation were of the opinion that you would never play for this club again if you behaved that way here. Simply put, I didn’t consider that appropriate.

Our policy is that you stand at the anthem with your toe on the line, Jones told reporters in 2018.

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