Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., on Wednesday slammed the NBA for politicizing the Texas elementary school shooting after the Miami Heat urged fans at a playoff game to demand gun reform after the mass shooting at a school in Uvalde, Texas that left 21 dead, including 19 children.
“The @NBA doesn’t like to talk about the billions they make from a China that enslaves Uyghur Muslims and harvests their organs But they have no problem politicizing a horrific tragedy in America,” Rubio tweeted in response to a video posted by the Heat where the announcer urged fans to reach out to lawmakers and “also make a change at the ballot box.”
Rubio also urged the NBA to “condemn the genocide of Uyghur Muslims being committed by your business partners in China” since “@NBA @MiamiHeat is so committed to social justice and has pledged to “speak the truth.”
China, a big partner for the NBA, has corralled as many as a million Muslim Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities into internment camps and prisons in recent years in an effort to tamp down extremism, reported The New York Times.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver last year called the league’s relationship with China “complicated.”
“I do think it remains important, that particularly when tensions are high between governments, that we foster these sports, educational, cultural relationships,” Silver said before a playoff game last July. “I’ve said that from the very beginning. It certainly doesn’t mean that we are blessing everything that happens in China by any means. We are at root an American company, and so we follow U.S. government policy.”
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