DWYANE WADE SONS: ZAIRE, 11, AND ZION 6
WHAT WAS YOUR REACTION TO THE NOT-GUILTY VERDICT?
I was kind of stunned. Obviously, it was something a lot of us, especially in the African-American community, felt strongly about. I was shocked, surprised and confused, because I knew one day I’d have to have this conversation with my kids about this very public case.
HOW DO YOU TALK TO YOUR SONS ABOUT TRAYVON MARTIN?
Listening to how everything happened with Trayvon, I think he did what you would tell your kids to do. If they are walking with friends or alone and someone was to follow them, you’d tell your child to try to keep going. Hopefully, the person following you will stop. If that person doesn’t, then you try to lose him. I think [Trayvon] did everything right, then he had to defend himself. If l had to add one thing, it would be to call 911. instead of calling a friend.
WHAT ARE YOUR HOPES AND FEARS AS A FATHER OF BLACK BOYS IN AMERICA?
My hope is that they can get the same opportunity as others, no matter what they do in life. Even if they don’t play professional sports or if they aren’t famous, I would hope they would get the same opportunities as everyone else. [Blacks] fought for so long for equal rights.
My fears are that they don’t [experience what other Black boys experience] because of being my sons. And when [discrimination] does happen, they will be shocked because a lot of people treat them a certain way because they are my kids. Through this experience, maybe they can be reminded a little bit about being African-American kids. In a sense, I’m afraid of that, because I want to g ve them so much. I was able to overcome, and I want my kids to be able to have what I didn’t have.
AS TOLD TO MARGENA A. CHRISTIAN (LEE AND WADE) AND JORIAN L. SEAY (KODJOE)