LeBron–$68 Million ‘Runaway Slave’?

Jesse Jackson says the Cavs' owner treated LeBron like his slave. Right on or too much, Jesse?

By Jorge Rivas Jul 12, 2010

Shortly after basketball player LeBron James announced he was leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers to join Miami Heat his old boss and owner of the Cavaliers Dan Gilbert wrote a nasty letter calling James’ decision cowardly.

In a letter addressed to the city of Cleveland and Cavaliers supporters everywhere, Gilbert wrote:

As you now know, our former hero, who grew up in the very region that he deserted this evening, is no longer a Cleveland Cavalier… This was announced with a several day, narcissistic, self-promotional build-up culminating with a national TV special of his "decision" unlike anything ever "witnessed" in the history of sports and probably the history of entertainment.

Jesse Jackson didn’t like Gilbert’s comments one bit. In fact, he compared Gilbert to a slave owner. "He speaks as an owner of LeBron and not the owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers," said Jackson. "He sees LeBron as a runaway slave. This is an owner employee relationship–between business partners–and LeBron honored his contract."

James has been paid $68 million by the Cavaliers, so clearly he’s no slave. And Jackson has certainly had his share of over-the-top public pronouncements in recent years (see under, Barack Obama and castration). But what say you? Right on or just too much, Jesse?