Sports fans can be very passionate about their favorite teams. But at least one fan took things too far when they defaced a Los Angeles Lakers mural featuring newly-acquired player LeBron James.
Artists Jonas Never and Fernando Valdez worked for 12 hours over the course of two days creating a mural that featured James’ likeness. The image of the star player — who is arguably the best in the league today (maybe ever) — was surrounded by wording that read “The King of LA.”
Someone clearly didn't like the imagery, however, and decided that the best way to criticize the art was to deface it, two days after it was initially painted. An unknown individual wrote, “We don’t want you!” and “No King” on the mural, and splattered yellow paint across the player’s mouth.
Well that didn't last long smh pic.twitter.com/Jjq0rrEM43— LWOS LA Lakers (@LWOSLALakers) July 8, 2018
The artists decided to fix the mural, painting over the vandalism and even editing their work, hoping that it would remove whatever offensiveness existed. They took out the word “of” so that it would read, “The King” and “LA” without necessarily connecting the two together.
Alas, that still didn’t suffice, and the mural was, once again, defaced earlier this week. Never decided that was enough and explained in an Instagram post his decision to erase the mural entirely.
Taking everything in stride, Never wrote, “Fun while it lasted! Thanks to everyone (both the good and the bad) for making this mural such a hot topic... and really just making the Lakers part of the conversation again.”
Never’s positivity in his post is admirable. But his work of art did not deserve the treatment that it received. He and Valdez dedicated two days of work toward this project, and for someone to deface it in the way that they did is disappointing, to say the least.
Sports fans are, of course, entitled to their opinions. But ruining someone else’s artwork in order to express your own thoughts is downright contemptible, and whoever did so should feel awful about it.