Podcast host Megyn Kelly slammed NBA executives and stars on Tuesday over the league’s constant denouncements of racism in the U.S. while refusing to condemn China for its human rights abuses.
Kelly, host of “The Megyn Kelly Show,” interviewed “House of Strauss” writer Ethan Strauss, formerly of ESPN, on Tuesday about the NBA and its dearth of players, coaches, and executives willing to criticize China. On the other hand, the league has embraced social justice movements such a Black Lives Matter that condemn aspects of the United States.
“If you’re going to play the moral arbiter of us all and lecture on BLM and why the United States has so much work to do when it comes to how it treats its people and then take money from this regime that’s forcing sterilizations on women, putting them into work camps against their will, and so on, you can spare me. Please,” Kelly said. “You’ve lost the moral authority. It’s like Joe Biden lecturing us on sexism in the United States when, you know, girls are now getting their heads chopped off by the Taliban in Afghanistan. He can stop. He can stop because they’re there exposed because we pulled out so soon.”
Kelly went on to praise Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter for his outspoken stand against China and the silence in the NBA. Since Kanter began openly criticizing China, Celtics games have been pulled from the air in China.
Kanter’s latest statements on China came in a video posted to his social media on Monday slamming Nike and challenging NBA greats LeBron James, who still plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, and Michael Jordan to visit China and “visit these slave labor camps,” referring to Chinese concentration camps for Uyghur Muslims in China’s Xinjiang province.
“Your company says that you’re making a positive impact in our communities,” Kanter said, referring to Nike. “And that is true. Yes, you are. Here, in the United States, Nike stands with Black Lives Matter. Nike stands with Stop Asian Hate. Nike stands with the Latino community. And Nike stands with the LGBTQ community … But when it comes to China, Nike remains silent.”
“You do not address [police brutality] in China, you do not speak about discrimination against the LGBTQ community, you do not say a word about the oppression of minorities in China. You are scared to speak up,” he continued. “Who makes your shoes in China? Do you even know? There are so many forced labor factories in China.”
“Did you know that almost the entire apparel and footwear industry is tainted by Uyghur forced labor? Many well-known global brands are implicated,” Kanter said. “And yes, that includes one of the NBA’s biggest sponsors, Nike. Nike claims that they do not allow any forced labor in their supply chains. Yet, they don’t have the receipts to prove it. … Don’t forget, every time you put those shoes on your feet, or you put that t-shirt on your back, there are some many tears and so much oppression, and so much blood behind it all.”
Kanter ended his video challenging Nike c0-founder Phil Knight, James, and Jordan to take a trip to China to witness for themselves the ongoing human rights abuses taking place.
“Nike likes to say ‘Just Do It.’ Well, what are you doing about the slave labor that makes your shoes? That slave labor that makes you rich,” Kanter said. “To the owner of Nike — Phil Knight — I have a message for you. How about I book plane tickets for us, let’s fly to China together. We can try to visit these slave labor camps and you can see with your own eyes. LeBron James and Michael Jordan, you guys are welcome to come too. Nike must be a participant in this. Stop the hypocrisy. Stop the modern-day slavery now.”
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