NBA star LeBron James called Daryl Morey (the general manager of the Houston Rockets) uneducated for supporting the pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong, who are protesting China’s oppressive communist regime.
LeBron said Morey was not “educated on the situation” before tweeting his support for the protesters.
James then appeared to side with China in its ongoing efforts to censor the protesters and silence anyone in the NBA who criticizes the authoritarian government.
LeBron made the shocking statements yesterday (Oct. 14) before the Los Angeles Lakers played the Golden State Warriors.
“We all talk about this ‘freedom of speech.’ Yes, we all do have freedom of speech,” LeBron said. “But at times, there are ramifications for the negative that can happen when you’re not thinking about others and you’re only thinking about yourself. I don’t want to get into a…feud with Daryl Morey, but I believe he wasn’t educated on the situation at hand when he spoke.”
It’s unclear why James thought Daryl Morey was only “thinking about himself” when he posted a benign tweet saying: “Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong.”
The protesters are demonstrating for free speech and democracy, which China is oppressing in Hong Kong.
Twitter is banned in China, so it’s unlikely that most people in the country saw Morey’s tweet in the first place.
After James made those pro-communism statements, he took to Twitter to clarify his remarks.
However, his incoherent tweets fueled more backlash, since James said the NBA was having a “difficult week” because of the China controversy.
In other words, James suggested the NBA was the victim, and not the protesters — who are being beaten and jailed for wanting democracy in Hong Kong.
My team and this league just went through a difficult week. I think people need to understand what a tweet or statement can do to others. And I believe nobody stopped and considered what would happen. Could have waited a week to send it.
— LeBron James (@KingJames) October 15, 2019
Republican Senator Rick Scott slammed James on Twitter, saying LeBron “is the one who isn’t educated on the situation at hand.”
Scott added: “It’s sad to see him join the chorus kowtowing to Communist China and putting profits over human rights for Hong Kong. I was there 2 weeks ago. They’re fighting for freedom and the autonomy they were promised.”
As BizPacReview reported, the Chinese government became enraged by Daryl Morey’s tweet, so Chinese businesses pulled their NBA sponsorships. In addition, Chinese broadcasters and streaming platforms threatened to stop airing NBA games.
The NBA reacted by issuing a groveling apology to China and disavowing Morey’s statement. NBA stars have since refused to condemn China’s brutal regime for fear of losing more sponsorships.
The irony of LeBron siding with an oppressive, authoritarian regime is especially ridiculous since he trashed President Trump as authoritarian and called his supporters uneducated.
I'm sure LeBron Jones, who gleefully trashed Trump and called his supporters uneducated, will slam China for its draconian censorship of his fellow NBA stars and basketball fans, right? pic.twitter.com/tZ05xJWVkn
— Samantha Chang (@samantha_chang) October 9, 2019
In December 2018, LeBron made headlines for siding with kneeling NFL players who protested the American national anthem.
At the time, LeBron trashed all NFL team owners, saying they’re a bunch of “old white men” with a “slave mentality.” He probably meant “slave-owner mentality,” but whatever.
James said: “In the NFL, they just got a bunch of old, white men owning teams and they got that slave mentality.”
Of course, slaves don’t get paid millions of dollars, nor are they celebrated as icons simply for doing their jobs. It also bears noting that no group has created more black millionaires than the NFL (or the NBA).
Speaking of slavery, it couldn’t have been dismantled without the help of “old white men” like Republican President Abraham Lincoln.
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