LeBron James: In the Court of Public Opinion, the Jury's Usually Right

Gene ZarnickCorrespondent IJune 13, 2011

I just got to witness the Miami Heat lose the NBA Championship. That's the headline I'll remember from this miraculous series.

After six amazing games, I'm not sure if I'm happier the Heat lost or saddened in fact that I don't get to continue watching LeBron James fail at the pinnacle moment of his career.

Some people may disagree with my sentiments and say, "How can a person rejoice over another person's failures?"

I can and I feel there's nothing wrong in doing so.

If there was one thing I learned from the NBA Finals, it's that people aren't accepting of the truth.

Sorry to break the news to you, but over 75 percent of the population dislike the Miami Heat, so stop trying to change my opinion on them.

Ever since The Decision, it's been a constant back and forth battle between the LeBron James bashers and the The King's defenders. The bashers disliked how he handled the situation, thought he made a mockery of Cleveland and most of all, thought it was an ego driven production that took place in Grenwich, CT. The defenders, on the other hand, praised his decision for allowing him to play where he wanted to play, play who he wanted to play with and most of all, play for a championship and not for the money.

The funny thing about the entire situation is that both the bashers and defenders are correct in their assessments.

That's the exact point I'm trying to make.

People create opinions for their own reasoning. If I dislike LeBron for the sole factor that he left the Cleveland Cavaliers and that's the team I root for, then so be it.  

Why should you tell me I can't feel this way?

As long as I can justify to myself the reasoning behind my thinking, then what anyone else thinks shouldn't matter to me.

I'm tired of playing the pros and cons game with every issue in the world. You can't have an opinion anymore unless you can rebut the opposition. No longer can you just like or dislike something because of the way you feel about it, you have to fully be aware of everything that it is and stands for before you can throw your two cents in.

To me, that's not an opinion.

I don't need to be like everyone else and have the same thought process. I know what I like, I know what I dislike, and I know the reasons for both. You can try to persuade me otherwise, but I don't really care.

 If I'm going to change my mind on an issue, I'll do it on my own.

It seems odd to me that 75 percent of the population can dislike a person, but we're wrong for doing so. Maybe that other 25 percent just hasn't seen the light.

I'm a firm believer that the public opinion is usually the correct one. If the majority of people are anti-LeBron, then it's probably for good reason. Most people don't just dislike someone for no reason. It may not be a good reason they dislike him, but there's always a reason. The same goes with everything else in this world.

Go visit Rotten Tomatos and check the reviews out on movies. Only 35 percent of people recommended The Hangover II. Should those 35 percent of people start defending the movie to everyone who disagrees with them?

I'm fine with accepting that 2/3 of the people who saw the movie didn't like it and 1/3 did. I can live with different people having different views on the movie.

LeBron James didn't live up to the hype or potential that he has. That's what I believe. Maybe what we saw in these last six games is exactly who LeBron James is though.  

All I can go on is what I saw him do and what I expected from him. He failed in my eyes.

Others may feel differently, which is fine. That's what I love about sports. Everything doesn't have to be so definitive. People can view things in different perspectives.

All I want people to do is be truthful in their assessments. Too many times people aren't, especially analysts on television.

At this point during LeBron James' career, he choked. Perceive it otherwise, but to me and many others, he choked. This doesn't mean that five years from now, he won't have the greatest finals performance we've ever seen before and totally change the perception of himself.

That's exactly what he should do.

Too many times people are afraid to say how they feel because eventually their opinion will change and then they'll be considered a hypocrite. I just feel it's part of growing as a person to have differing views than you once had.

People change every day. I change every day.

I know I'm not the person I was one year ago from today and I won't be the same person a year from now.  

I might change a little, I might change a lot, but I'll change one way or another. 

If right now, you weigh 500 lbs then I'd consider you fat. If in five years, you weight 150 lbs, I'd consider you skinny. Was I wrong in my initial characterization of you? Should I not feel this way because eventually you may change and lose the weight?

Right now, LeBron is the fat person when everyone wants him to be the skinny guy. One day he might be the skinny guy, but right now he isn't fitting into those size 32 jeans.

You can hate Mark Cuban one year and love him five years later. You can love Lance Armstrong five years ago and despise him now.

Instead of worrying about having the wrong opinion eventually, stop being afraid of having the right opinion now.