Dwyane Wade Says His Family Left Florida Because They ‘Would Not Be Accepted’

"I have to make decisions for my family, not just personal, individual decisions," the retired NBA star said.

Retired NBA great Dwyane Wade said his family left Florida because of the state’s restrictive laws targeting LGBTQ+ people in an interview set to air this week.

Wade made the comments for Showtime’s “Headliners” series which airs Thursday, telling host Rachel Nichols his family moved to California after he retired from the NBA in 2019. Wade’s 15-year-old daughter, Zaya, is transgender.

“That’s another reason why I don’t live in that state,” he said. “A lot of people don’t know that. I have to make decisions for my family, not just personal, individual decisions. Obviously, the taxes is great. Having Wade County is great. But my family would not be accepted or feel comfortable there.”

“And so that’s one of the reasons why I don’t live there.”

Florida has become an epicenter of Republican efforts to limit the freedoms of LGBTQ+ Americans. Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has unleashed a government attack against Disney after the company opposed his “Don’t Say Gay” legislation. State lawmakers have since expanded that law, and have moved to limit gender-affirming care for transgender youth and punish businesses that host drag shows.

Wade said he credits his father for his own behavior as a parent, saying he was just “a mirror image of the way he loved us and the way that he accepted not only myself and my brother, but other kids in the community.”

“I don’t know any difference,” he said. “And so yes, I had to educate myself and yes, I had to get a better understanding. And yes, I had to lose some friends along the process, but I never wavered on loving my kids and trying to find space to get the chance to understand them.”

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