Dwyane Wade has taken to social media to blast Trolls for mocking 12-year-old son after a family photo showed him with fake nails and a crop top.
Hateful comments directed at the Wade family began after Gabrielle Union shared a holiday photo to Instagram on Thanksgiving.
Accompanied with a caption thanking loved ones for their support, the photo showed Wade and Union posing with 12-year-old Zion Malachi Airamis Wade and baby Kaavia James Union Wade.
What was initially an adorable post turned sour when users began to target Zion for his appearance.
Gabrielle Union (right) shared a Thanksgiving family photo with Dwyane Wade (left) , Zion Wade (middle) and Kaavia Wade (far left)
Later that afternoon, Wade responded to the criticism on his Twitter account
Wade wrote: 'I’ve seen some post-thanksgiving hate on social about my family photo. Stupidity is apart of this world we live in—so i get it.'
'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 & a smile!'
Wade responded to the hateful comments on Twitter, explaining that he will continue to support his son 'with pride, love & a smile'
Wade's acknowledgment of the social media situation has garnered him support from several users, many of which praise him for his parenting skills and acceptance.
One user wrote: 'Idk if [Dwyane Wade] & [Gabrielle Union] know how POWERFUL & MOVING it is that they’re embracing their son’s individuality. (Damnit I’m crying) In our community, being given autonomy over your body, beliefs, image, & statements as a child isn’t a thing. That child is free & happy.'
Another praised Wade's role as a father to Zion, saying other families could learn from his example.
'Shout out D. Wade for setting the example of a Black father loving and accepting their children as they are. There’d be a lot less trauma in our community if more Black dads were like this,' they wrote.
Wade responded to one user, saying 'As a parent my only goal is that my kids feel that i see them, love them and support them'
Some social media users praised Wade's acceptance and suggested his parenting style should be an example for other families
Wade doubled down on his stance, replying to one fan that he only hopes works to encourage his children's individuality.
'As a parent my only goal is that my kids feel that i see them, love them and support them,' he said.
Others, however, have chosen to leave mean-spirited comments under the Thanksgiving family photo and in tweets.
One person wrote: 'Damn I used to like Dwade man too busy balling couldn't raise his son properly.'
Some people choose to leave mean comments on Instagram and Twitter, targeting Zion and the Wade family
This user said on Instagram: 'This is not cool at all! Dwade & Gabrielle irritate my soul'
Others shared similar sentiments, going so far to say Wade and Union have failed as parents.
'This is not cool at all! Dwade & Gabrielle irritate my soul,' one woman said.
One person said: 'The Older generation continues to fail us. Even with two parents the children are still led astray'
They continued: 'You’re son has nails at the age that most girls don’t even get their nails done. You both failed as parents this is a damn shame.'
This user attacked Wade and Union's parenting style, saying they 'failed as parents'
'I wouldn’t let my 11 y/o DAUGHTER wear acrylic nails & a belly shirt, let alone my son. This is too much, too soon'
Despite Wade's response, some users have continued to leave rude and unsolicited comments
One woman said that it was too soon to put acrylic nails on children, regardless of gender.
She said: 'I wouldn’t let my 11 y/o DAUGHTER wear acrylic nails & a belly shirt, let alone my son. This is too much, too soon. He’s just a child & can be fierce when he’s older.'
'This n**** Dwyane wade got his son out here wearing nails and dressing like a girl...if you ask me...I think he has been molested,' one user wrote in a particularly egregious post.