Obama Encourages Athletes to Be Activists

I think LeBron did the right thing… We forget the role that Muhammad Ali, Arthur Ashe and Bill Russell played in raising consciousness. We went through a long stretch there where [with] well-paid athletes the notion was: just be quiet and get your endorsements and don’t make waves… LeBron is an example of a young man who has, in his own way and in a respectful way, tried to say, ‘I’m part of this society, too.’ I’d like to see more athletes do that. Not just around this issue, but around a range of issues.

— President Obama didn’t hesitate in an interview with People to endorse LeBron James’s decision to wear an ‘I Can’t Breathe’ T-shirt.