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Dwyane Wade: Former NBA star condemns trolls who mock his child's LGBT+ identity

Former NBA star Dwyane Wade has condemned trolls who mock his child Zion, stating that the 12-year-old has more “strength and courage” than he does.

During a recent interview on video podcast All The Smoke, with former NBA players Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, Wade opened up about raising Zion and why it is important to “learn something from your kids”.

The former professional basketball player explained that when his son was three years old, he and his wife, actor Gabrielle Union, started having conversations about Zion’s gender identity, as they noticed “he wasn’t on the boy vibe that [his elder child] Zaire was on”.

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“I had to look at myself in the mirror and say, ‘What are you going to do if your son comes home and tells you he’s gay? What are you going to do? How are you going to be? How are you going to act?’” he said.

Wade, who has four children, stated: “It ain’t about him. He knows who he is. It’s about you. Who are you?”

The 37-year-old continued, referring to Zion using the female gender pronoun “she”.

“I’ve watched my son, from day one, become into who she now eventually has come into,” he said.

“For me it’s all about nothing changes with my love. Nothing changes with my responsibilities. Only thing I have to do now is get smarter and educate myself more. And that’s my job.”

Wade then addressed the online trolls who have sought to criticise his child.

“Understand that you’re the one that’s got the issues. You’re the one that’s got the problems. It’s not the kids,” he affirmed.

Earlier this month, Wade publicly responded to trolls who derided his son’s decision to wear long manicured nails and a crop top.

Union had shared a photograph of herself with Wade, Zion and their baby daughter, Kaavia, to mark Thanksgiving.

While many social media users expressed messages of admiration towards the family, some mocked Zion’s choice of ensemble.

Wade addressed the mockery on Twitter, describing it as “stupidity”.

“I’ve seen some post-Thanksgiving hate on social media about my family photo. Stupidity is apart of this world we live in – so I get it,” he stated.

“But here’s the thing – I’ve been chosen to lead my family not y’all. So we will continue to be us and support each other with pride, love and a smile!”

In April, Zion attended Miami Pride with several relatives, including stepmother Union.

While Wade was unable to attend the event, he shared a message of support on his Instagram Story, writing: “We support each other with Pride!”