The sports world whiffs on China
Chamath Palihapitiya and the NBA take gold for muddled thinking
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BY HENRY ABBOTT
The 2022 Winter Olympics open today in Beijing—and suddenly the world is not sure how it feels about using sports to celebrate autocratic China. The U.S. has led a diplomatic boycott of the games; Congress has held hearings Nancy Pelosi is warning athletes against protesting the Chinese government, which she calls “ruthless.” ESPN recently reported that many of the sporting goods promoted by NBA players are likely made by forced Uyghur labor. Companies who paid a fortune to sponsor the games are reportedly keeping a low profile.
The brutality of China is hardly a new issue in the NBA. What’s new is an argument, as voiced by an NBA investor, that it’s wrong to care.
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