LeBron James should have just sat this one out.
With much of the country riveted by the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, the loud-mouthed NBA superstar decided to weigh in last month to accuse Rittenhouse of faking an emotional breakdown while testifying in his own defense.
It backfired on LeBron — badly.
In a tweet published on Nov. 10, after Rittenhouse’s riveting testimony was over, the Los Angeles Lakers star — a man who plays basketball for a living — apparently decided the country absolutely needed to hear his opinion of what was taking place in Judge Bruce Schroeder’s courtroom.
He wasn’t sympathetic to the defendant, an 18-year-old who at the time was facing murder charges for shooting three men who attacked him during the riots in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last year, killing two of them.
Responding to a USA Today report that the 18-year-old Rittenhouse had broken down “in tears,” James suggested it was all an act.
“What tears????? I didn’t see one,” he wrote. “Man knock it off! That boy ate some lemon heads before walking into court.”
What tears????? I didn’t see one. Man knock it off! That boy ate some lemon heads before walking into court. ??? https://t.co/LKwYssIUmD
— LeBron James (@KingJames) November 11, 2021
Even amid the liberal garbage that makes up most of Twitter conversation these days, the tweet was a failure.
James’ own history doesn’t support him. From his senseless attack this spring on the Columbus, Ohio, police officer who saved a young black woman’s life to James’ contemptible silence in the face of totalitarian tactics by the NBA’s sponsors in the Chinese communist dictatorship (even while other NBA players are speaking up), it’s safe to say James has forfeited any kind of moral high ground when it comes to commenting on current events.
Twitter users let him know it:
glad you could take a break from promoting slavery in China that benefits you to mock a kid who defended himself legally.
— Jessica O’Donnell (@heckyessica) November 11, 2021
Lebron, great defender of the Chinese government’s tyranny, also happens to be an unparalleled dumpster fire in the field of criminal justice pic.twitter.com/Hs9JeXnBt9
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) November 11, 2021
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) November 11, 2021
Lebron, go play ball and let Kyle live his life. This is a classic case of self defense and you know it. Did XI approve this tweet?
— Lavern Spicer (@lavern_spicer) November 11, 2021
If you are suggesting he was somehow faking it, then he is a much better actor than you were in Space Jam.
— Dan O’Donnell (@DanODonnellShow) November 11, 2021
He’s crying because he had to shoot someone and take a life in self defense.
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) November 11, 2021
More than a few of the responders also noted James’ own longstanding reputation for flopping on the court to draw a foul. (As that “you got a cramp” post above notes, James’ fortitude in the face of injuries has also come under question.)
No one knows how to fake something better than you??♂️ pic.twitter.com/XHLzaTX00d
— Graham Allen (@GrahamAllen_1) November 11, 2021
Considering the Rittenhouse prosecution became a cause célèbre among liberals — a rare case where leftists actually wanted an accused criminal to be convicted and imprisoned — and considering the likely political slant of most of James’ social media followers, the number of James critics was impressive compared with those applauding his tweet.
The reality is that any honest American who followed the case since it started on Aug. 25, 2020, knew Rittenhouse was acting in self-defense when he was chased and attacked by a mob on the streets of Kenosha.
Anyone who followed the trial beyond the misleading headlines of the mainstream media knew that the prosecution’s case was weak as water from the beginning.
Anyone who caught even part of Rittenhouse’s testimony, under the vindictively flailing cross-examination by Kenosha County Assistant District Attorney Thomas Bissinger, knew the prosecution in the case was relying more on smearing the defendant’s character than proving legal guilt.
Clearly, James was on board with that. Rittenhouse, after all, was on the wrong side in Kenosha that night, from James and other progressives’ point of view:
He was a young, white man trying to protect private property from destruction by a Black Lives Matter mob. He was trying to render medical aid to those who needed it. And he was armed with an AR-15 to protect himself in the middle of a dangerous situation.
But no matter how he felt, Lebron didn’t need to involve himself at the late stage of the trial.
A glance at his Twitter account shows he hadn’t felt compelled to comment on it at that stage, so it’s an open question of whether he knew anything about it or was simply reacting to leftist pressures. In any case, it came off as stunning foolish.
The Rittenhouse saga was already a national disgrace of political prosecution and misguided mob instinct.
And LeBron just had to pile on.
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