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Culture

'Woke' NBA Bows to Communist Tyrants

But Chinese influence over the decisions of American companies is growing.

Brian Mark Weber · Oct. 11, 2019

The Hong Kong protests have inspired people around the world and especially here at home. Some Americans have even taken to social media to voice their support, including Daryl Morey, general manager of the NBA’s Houston Rockets, who tweeted what he probably thought was a harmless show of support for freedom and democracy. After all, who among us could take issue with such a quintessentially American statement as “Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong”?

Freedom-loving Americans, meet the “woke” NBA and its communist-sympathizing speech suppressors.

Morey was pressured to retract his statement by the NBA brass, which is bending over backwards to keep from offending Chinese President Xi Jinping and his despotic comrades. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, who hates Donald Trump but loves the Black Lives Matter movement, thoroughly disgraced himself by apologizing to the ChiComs while all the world was watching.

This is what happens when American companies sell out in the blind pursuit of profits: They side with monstrous regimes that harvest the organs of their political prisoners. And that’s just one of the current abuses. Don’t forget the tens of millions slaughtered by previous ChiCom regimes.

It’s easy to find the hypocrisy in the NBA’s supplication to China. Suddenly, the league has decided to crack down on certain kinds of political expression while at the same time encouraging its players’ support of domestic “progressive” causes.

Remember, this is the same NBA that pulled its 2017 All Star Game out of Charlotte, North Carolina, after that state’s Republican governor signed a biological-sex “bathroom bill” into law. (One wonders whether the NBA has any clue as to how homosexual and transgender people are treated in China.)

ESPN’s social-justice warriors have been equally craven, as revealed in a leaked internal memo forbidding its on-air “talent” from even discussing Hong Kong or Chinese politics. This is the same ESPN whose president, Jimmy Pitarro, last year explained that whenever there is an intersection of sports and politics, “ESPN is the place of record. Of course, when you tune into ESPN … we need to be covering those stories, if there is a connection to sports.”

But when a nascent democracy movement makes the news? Crickets.

Here’s more: A CNN news reporter who questioned an NBA player about the controversy was shut down this week; Nike’s anti-Betsy Ross battalions are pulling Houston Rockets products from the shelves of Chinese stores; and Apple just removed from its App Store an app that helped the people of Hong Kong monitor police movements.

Remember, this is all the result of a seven-word pro-democracy tweet. If only Daryl Morey had tweeted, “Fight for Freedom. Impeach Donald Trump.”

Jarrett Stepman writes at The Daily Signal, “Political dialogue is great unless the gravy train from an authoritarian state is cut off, it seems. Celebrating the Betsy Ross flag is beyond the pale, but we don’t dare in any way contradict the whims of a brutal, police state regime that puts Muslims in concentration camps, forces women to have abortions, and throws citizens in prison for exercising their God-given right to free speech, among other atrocities.”

As the editors at the Washington Examiner explain, “Terrified of losing out on potential future profits from 1.4 billion Chinese consumers, Hollywood and Silicon Valley have bowed again and again to Chinese censors.”

If the Chinese were only interested in silencing a basketball league or a sports network, we might not have much to worry about, but their influence is growing more pervasive. They’re practically calling the shots in Hollywood and have already established nearly 90 Confucius Institutes in colleges and universities across America to indoctrinate our debt-ridden students with Chinese propaganda.

“These are the times that try men’s souls,” said Thomas Paine. Sadly, the NBA and many other American entities have already sold theirs. Perhaps we American consumers should begin to make buying decisions that reflect our displeasure.

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