Republican Texas Senator Ted Cruz took shot verbal shots at NBA player LeBron James after the star basketball player sided with China in its anger toward those in the NBA who would speak out against it.
According to TMZ, Cruz took aim at LeBron’s concern for money and sponsorship dollars, specifically from Nike, and said he understands the need to keep your income, but that siding with murderous tyrants isn’t the look he should be going for.
“I got to say, LeBron James, he’s a hell of a player, but it sure seems his comments were more interested in money and making bucks and I get it,” said Cruz. “Nike is a big sponsor of his and he makes a whole lot of money, but kissing up to Chinese communists and tyrants and apologizing for murderers, that’s not a good look for the NBA.”
Cruz said he didn’t mind athletes speaking out on politics, but when they speak out in ignorance and end up defending tyrants, that’s when he begins to have a problem. He went on to defend Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey’s tweet about standing with Hong Kong.
Cruz encouraged LeBron to educate himself about the Chinese government’s past of oppressing and persecuting their own people, and those of other countries.
“I would encourage LeBron to learn a little bit about the people of Tibet, learn a little bit about Falun Gong, the religious persecution and the torture and the horrific human rights abuses that occur in China,” he said.
Cruz said that doing business with China is one thing, but capitulating to their rules and ways isn’t the way to go.
“Now, that doesn’t mean we should never do business with China,” he added, “but we don’t need to adopt their values. We don’t need to embrace censorship and propaganda — and sadly that’s what the Chinese government wants the NBA to do.”