NBA star and Black Lives Matter activist LeBron James has sparked backlash after tweeting out a photograph of an Ohio cop who shot a black teen as she was lunging at another black girl with a knife, warning him that he’s “next” along with an emoji of an hourglass.
He subsequently pulled the tweet “because its being used to create more hate”, saying: “ANGER does any of us any good and that includes myself! Gathering all the facts and educating does though! My anger still is here for what happened that lil girl. My sympathy for her family and may justice prevail!”
He went on to add: “I’m so damn tired of seeing Black people killed by police. I took the tweet down because its being used to create more hate -This isn’t about one officer. it’s about the entire system and they always use our words to create more racism. I am so desperate for more ACCOUNTABILITY”
The incendiary tweet has sparked outrage, with Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton saying that James “is inciting violence against an Ohio police officer. This is disgraceful and dangerous. Is the NBA okay with this? Is Twitter?”
Top US TV host Sean Hannity condemned the comments too, saying: “what he did was beyond reckless, beyond irresponsible, and put this officer and his family in danger. LeBron, you basically just put a bullseye on a police officer who saved a young, unarmed African American teenager who was about to be stabbed – possibly to death.”
James’ now-deleted warning comes in the wake of former Minnesota cop Derek Chauvin’s conviction on three charges over the killing of American criminal George Floyd, in a remarkably quick verdict delivered amid threats of left-wing riots.
The conduct of the trial amid left-wing mob violence has caused controversy, with one of America’s top legal scholars and lawyers, Professor Alan Dershowitz, saying the verdict should be reversed on appeal.
Dershowitz, a lifelong Democrat, has a long reputation as a defense attorney and is well known for his involvement in the trials of OJ Simpson and Claus von Bülow. He has also predicted that the Supreme Court of the United States will ultimately overturn the conviction.