WASHINGTON, D.C. – While the partisan splits on politics are deep and numerous, at least there are a few issues that otherwise looney Democrats can join conservatives in speaking up on. So what does it take for Congresswoman and trending millennial social justice queen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to sign her name to the same passionate letter that a Texas conservative like Senator Ted Cruz is also signing.
Well, not just basketball. More specifically the NBA’s apparent willingness to kowtow to Communist China’s oppression of free speech by further muzzling Americans’ speech.
After a member of the Houston Rockets organization voiced support for protesters in Hong Kong fighting against Chinese attacks on freedom, the Chinese government responded in exponential fashion, suspending media distribution of games, ripping down billboards, and seemingly ‘breaking up’ with the NBA. Instead of standing up for an American and organization member’s unalienable right to free speech, though, the NBA has been bending over backwards to maintain their lucrative access to the Chinese market no matter how many communist authoritarian diktats they have to enable, even against Americans.
From the Federalist:
“[…] A bipartisan coalition of members of Congress sent a letter to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver regarding the league’s willingness to censor free speech to maintain revenue from China’s enormous market.
The letter said it is “outrageous that the NBA has caved to Chinese government demands for contrition,” and that they are “deeply concerned” that this dust-up will only encourage the Chinese in their ability to intimidate American companies with economic threats. Eight members of Congress signed the letter, including Republican Sens. Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton, and Ben Sasse, as well as Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and House Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Jim Banks, R-In., Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., and Tom Malinowski, D-N.J. […]”
That is as unlikely a cohort of congressmen and senators as you’ll find to all support one issue such blunt terms. Further than merely admonishing the NBA for caving to the Chinese, the lawmakers suggest actions steps for the NBA to take to push back against the overbearing People’s Republic.
While basketball maybe ‘just a game,’ this flare up marks a giant schism between Western assumptions about individual rights and a communist Chinese regime that crushes dissent and thinks the world should bow to them.
If anything can be so clearly defined as right and wrong that even AOC can see it enough to join conservatives in calling for action, it must be significant. This won’t be the only cultural clash to come out of China and U.S. relations, though, as the communists perniciousness will only grow with their geopolitical audacity. Appeasement and contrition by companies hoping to make some Chinese yuan only serve to embolden them further.