Former NBA star Dwyane Wade is responding to criticism he received in April after sharing a photo of his son at an LGBTQ Pride parade in Miami.
Wade, speaking to Variety, made no apologies for supporting his son and said he was surprised by negative reactions — but was also uneasy with the praise he received for simply supporting his son.
“This is my job as a father, and I’m very uneasy about accolades that come from supporting my kids or, obviously, the negativity that comes with it,” he explained. “You know, I’m doing what every parent should do.”
Wade was traveling with the Miami Heat in April when 11-year-old Zion attended the parade with his stepmother, actress Gabrielle Union.
“We support each other with Pride!” Wade wrote in an Instagram post of the two, adding heart emojis.
In the conversation with Variety, Wade expressed how his life changed when his children were born and how his family is the most important thing in his life.
Watch the video below, via Variety:
— Variety (@Variety) June 18, 2019
“And so I’m doing what I feel is right for my family,” he explained, saying he wants his children to know they can do anything.
Wade credited his outlook on parenting to his own upbringing:
“You’ve got to understand, I’m from the inner city of Chicago, and I wasn’t told that. I wasn’t told that I could be anybody or do anything, and I wasn’t always shown that. So it’s my job to be that role model, to be that voice, you know, in my kids’ lives to let them know that you can conquer the world and you have the support of your father, you have the support of your family, every step of the way.”
“So go and be your amazing self,” he added. “And we’re going to sit back and love you and support you along the way.”