Given LeBron James’s seemingly all-consuming drive to speak out on any and every issue imaginable, it might come as a surprise to learn that there’s something that the NBA star wants to keep private.
Though, it appears there is something James wants to keep “private,” such as his decision about getting the coronavirus vaccine.
While talking to reporters on Sunday, James was asked if he planned on getting the coronavirus vaccine. The Lakers forward declined to answer the question directly, however, saying instead that he plans to keep that a “private” family thing.
“That’s a conversation my family and I will have,” he said. “I’ll keep that to a private thing.”
James isn’t alone in keeping his virus decision private, other NBA superstars have done the same.
worth noting that there are still a number of NBA players that are unsure about getting the COVID-19 vaccine. Donovan Mitchell and James Harden among those who today said they haven’t decided what they’ll be doing as far as the vaccine is concerned.
— Sarah Todd (@NBASarah) March 7, 2021
Others are concerned that NBA stars showing resistance to the vaccine will result in the public showing resistance to getting the vaccine.
Maybe not a ton of people will change their mind and decide to get the vaccine if NBA players say to, but people might second-guess it if players are on the fence or don't want to.
— Sean Highkin (@highkin) March 7, 2021
Still, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver remains committed to not mandating players to get the vaccine.
“My recommendation, my strong recommendation, not just to our players, but based on all the information I have, is that people should get vaccinated,” Silver said. “But I recognize that these are individual decisions. I haven’t been vaccinated yet, but I will, as soon as it is my turn.”
The commissioner highlighted the benefits of getting the vaccine, such as the need to not quarantine after receiving the vaccination.
I think, for example, to accept that a vaccinated player doesn’t have to quarantine will be very liberating. In addition, we have a fairly complex set of rules in place now that in many cases require twice-a-day lab testing of our players to ensure that we can avoid spread. It may be the case that when players are vaccinated, that we’re able to loosen up the testing schedules and therefore give players more freedom.
“I also respect that not everyone will see it the way we do,” Silver continued. “And ultimately, this is an individual decision that players need to make.”
The question of whether to take the vaccine has remained intensely controversial to most NBA players. The majority-black league has many members who feel distrust towards government or government-approved vaccinations due to the legacy of the Tuskegee Experiment. A 40-year program run by the U.S. government aimed at studying untreated syphilis in black males while telling the participants they were receiving free health care.