NBA Team’s Billionaire Owner Tries To Backtrack After Saying ‘Nobody Cares’ About Uyghur Genocide In China
Billionaire Chamath Palihapitiya, owner of the NBA Golden State Warriors, publicly apologized after saying "nobody cares" about Uyghur genocide.
Chamath Palihapitiya, billionaire venture capitalist and owner of the Golden State Warriors NBA team, is backtracking like crazy after saying that “nobody cares” about the Uyghur Genocide in China.
When @NBA says we stand for justice, don’t forget there are those who sell their soul for money & business like @chamath the owner of @warriors,
who says “Nobody cares about what’s happening to the Uyghurs”
When genocides happen, it is people
like this that let it happen
— Enes Kanter FREEDOM (@EnesFreedom) January 17, 2022
‘Nobody Cares About What’s Happening To The Uyghurs’
“Nobody cares about what’s happening to the Uyghurs, okay,” Palihapitiya said in an interview with the “All-In” podcast. “You bring it up because you care and I think it’s nice that you care. The rest of us don’t care. I’m just telling you a very hard, ugly truth. Of all the things that I care about, yes, it is below my line.”
“Every time I say that I care about the Uyghurs, I’m really just lying if I don’t really care. And so, I’d rather not lie to you and tell you the truth, it’s not a priority for me,” Palihapitiya later added.
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Palihapitiya also had words of praise for China, saying, “I’m not even sure that China is a dictatorship. There are a set of checks and balances here on China that, you know, at the end of the day, I don’t think that I have the moral absolutism to judge China.”
Palihapitiya went on to saying that the U.S. should not be criticizing another nation for human rights abuses because it incarcerates black men more than any other country in the world.
“If you want to talk about the human rights of people, I think we have a responsibility to take care of our own backyard first,” he said.
NBA Owner Backtracks Uyghur Comments
After his Uyghur comments went viral, Palihapitiya tried to backtrack on Twitter.
“I recognize that I come across as lacking empathy,” he wrote. “I acknowledge that entirely. As a refugee, my family fled a country with its own set of human rights issues so this is something that is very much a part of my lived experience. To be clear, my belief is that human rights matter, whether in China, the United States, or elsewhere. Full stop.”
Important issues deserve nuanced discussions. Some clarifying comments: pic.twitter.com/St2jccsu05
— Chamath Palihapitiya (@chamath) January 18, 2022
The Golden State Warriors also tried to distance itself from the team owner, saying that Palihapitiya “does not speak on behalf of our franchise, and his views certainly don’t reflect those of our organization.”
Warriors statement re: Chamath Palihapitiya: pic.twitter.com/zUl6i9sOve
— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) January 17, 2022
NBA Player Enes Kanter Calls Out China
In contrast to NBA owner Palihapitiya, Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter has been calling out China for human rights abuses, including the genocide of Uyghurs.
Heartless Dictator of China,
XI JINPING and the Communist Party of China.
I am calling you out in front of the whole world.
Close down the SLAVE labor camps and free the UYGHUR people!
— Enes Kanter FREEDOM (@EnesFreedom) October 22, 2021
Kanter’s criticism of China (and Nike) is garnering increased attention – including that of beloved Christian and “Everybody Loves Raymond” star Patricia Heaton.
Clearly, we need way more Enes Kanters in the world, and far fewer Chamath Palihapitiyas. Here’s hoping that the billionaire NBA owner faces consequences befitting his heartless remarks.