Last month, an old photo surfaced of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones taking part in a protest at North Little Rock High School in Arkansas. The photo, which was dated Sept. 9, 1957, showcased a group of white students blocking the entrance to the school and projecting racial slurs at six Black students who were attempting to enter the building.
Following Wednesday's game against the Portland Trail Blazers, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James asked why the media hadn't asked him about the photo of Jones. James also compared the situation to that of Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving recent sharing of antisemitic content on social media.
"I was wondering why I haven't gotten a question from you guys about the Jerry Jones photo, but when the Kyrie thing was going on, you guys were quick to ask us questions about that?" James said during his postgame press conference on Wednesday.
When a media member attempted to make a rebuttal, James quickly offered a follow-up comment on the matter.
"When I watch Kyrie talk and he says, 'I know who I am,' but I want to keep the same energy when we're talking about my people and the things that we've been through," James added. "And the Jerry Jones photo is one of those moments that our people—Black people—have been through in America.
"And I feel like, as a Black man, as a Black athlete, as someone with power and a platform, when we do something wrong or something that people don't agree with, it's on every single tabloid, every single news coverage, on the bottom ticker, it's asked about every single day. But it seems like to me the whole Jerry Jones situation, photo—and I know it was years and years ago and we all make mistakes, I get it—but it seems like it's just been buried under, like, 'Oh, it happened, O.K. we just move on.' And I'm kinda disappointed I haven't received that question from you guys."
Jones was 14 years old at the time that the photo was taken and he confirmed that it was indeed him in the photo. However, the Cowboys owner recently stated that he was just attending the protest and didn't understand the historical significance of it.
"It's just a lot of things that were going on when guys were kneeling. … The organization was like 'If you do that around here, you won't ever play for this franchise again.' I just didn't think that was appropriate," James said during an Instagram live session in October.