Kobe Bryant on Trayvon Martin: Don’t Defend Someone Just Because He’s Black

The basketball star dismissed the Miami Heat’s hoodie photo taken as a show of solidarity for the slain teen, saying that he refused to react just because he’s African American.

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Kobe Bryant

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Kobe Bryant wasn't impressed by the Miami Heat's 2012 hoodie photo, which was aimed at showing solidarity and support for slain unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin, the International Business Times reports.

According to the site, in the upcoming March 31 issue of the New Yorker, Bryant discusses the controversial topic that still ripples through the nation, along with other aspects of his life and career.

When asked by interviewer Ben McGrath what he thought about the Miami Heat's photos, well, the Laker said it showed a lack of "progress."

"I won't react to something just because I'm supposed to, because I'm an African American,” he reportedly said. "That argument doesn't make any sense to me. So we want to advance as a society and a culture, but, say, if something happens to an African American, we immediately come to his defense? Yet you want to talk about how far we've progressed as a society? Well, we've progressed as a society, then don't jump to somebody's defense just because they're African American. You sit and you listen to the facts just like you would in any other situation, right? So I won't assert myself."

Read what Kobe had to say in response to the backlash here