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Adam silver Blm messages Intelwars NBA Nba black lives matter Nba ratings

NBA likely to pull BLM messages from courts, jerseys next season

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced Tuesday that when the league returns to play next season, Black Lives Matter messages will likely not be displayed on the court or on players’ jerseys as they have been this season.

Silver made the remarks during an interview with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols ahead of Game 4 of the NBA Finals in Florida. During the interview, he said that despite the league being “completely committed to standing for social justice and racial equality,” how exactly that commitment is manifested is “something we’re gonna have to sit down with the players and discuss.”

“I would say, in terms of the messages you see on the court and our jerseys, this was an extraordinary moment in time when we began these discussions with the players and what we all lived through this summer,” Silver continued. “My sense is there’ll be somewhat a return to normalcy — that those messages will largely be left to be delivered off the floor.”


Adam Silver talks NBA bubble, when next season could start | NBA Countdown

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Though Silver did not explicitly say that the messages would be removed due to a significant drop in viewership this year, he did admit that backlash to the messages from some fans played a role.

“I understand those people who are saying ‘I’m on your side, but I want to watch a basketball game,'” he acknowledged.

The league has seen its viewership drop enormously during the NBA playoffs and especially during the NBA Finals. In September, news broke that playoff ratings were down 20% from the previous year and, according to a subsequent poll, 38% of fans said they’re not watching because the league has become “too political.”

Things only got worse from there as Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Miami Heat earned the lowest viewership ever for a Finals game. That record was then broken as couple days later when the ratings for Game 2 were lower still, then was broken again just days later when Game 3 attracted even fewer viewers.

It should be noted that nearly all major sports have experienced a ratings decline in 2020 as off-schedule seasons and empty arenas have proven to be significant drawbacks for viewers. Given the confluence of events, it is difficult to determine precisely why fewer people are watching.

With that said, however, the NBA commissioner’s comments seem to show that he is at least partially convinced that the league’s overt BLM messaging is financially problematic.

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China Chinese Communist Party Chinese concentration camps Chinese internment camps Intelwars NBA Nba china Rudy gobert Uighur muslims Uyghur muslims

Rudy Gobert becomes first NBA player to speak out against concentration camps in China: ‘Wrong is wrong’

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert publicly denounced China for reportedly operating concentration camps on Thursday. Gobert, who is French, becomes the first NBA player to condemn China over alleged human rights violations against Uighur Muslims.

Gobert, who made headlines in March when he was the first NBA player to test positive for COVID-19, shared an Instagram story with the caption: “Wrong is wrong.”

Gobert’s message linked to an Instagram post by French actor Omar Sy’s Instagram that has a light blue background to represent the blue flag of East Turkestan. The post featured the caption: “Millions of Uyghur Muslims are detained and tortured in concentration camps in China. Not for what they do, but for who they are. It is the largest mass incarceration of the 21st century. It has to end. #FreeUyghurs.”

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) applauded Gobert’s rebuke of China with a tweet that said: “This is big. Rudy Gobert of the @utahjazz calling out oppression of #Uighurs – first @NBA player to do so publicly.”

Hawley previously called out the NBA for its cozy relationship with the communist country. Hawley wrote a letter to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver in July, where he lambasted the hypocrisy of the basketball league’s policy of allowing players to select social activism messages on their jerseys such as “Black Lives Matter,” “I Can’t Breathe,” and “Anti-Racist,” but no messages about the Chinese internment camps.

Hawley also asked Silver why none of the 29 approved social justice messages are “in support of victims of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), including the people of Hong Kong, whose remaining freedoms are being extinguished by the CCP’s newly-enacted national security law.”

The last NBA employee who criticized China was castigated severely. Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey expressed support for Hong Kong protesters in a tweet posted on Oct. 4, 2019. Morey showed support for the pro-democracy protesters with a tweet that read: “Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong.”

Rockets’ management quickly condemned Morey’s tweet. NBA players also attacked the Rockets GM, including LeBron James, who reportedly questioned Commissioner Silver as to why Morey wasn’t being punished for his tweet.

Despite Morey apologizing, China immediately retaliated harshly. China’s state-owned CCTV and Tencent, the NBA’s streaming partner in China, stopped airing NBA games in China.

In July, ESPN released a bombshell report that young players and children were physically abused by coaches at NBA training academies in China, including in the Xinjiang province where internment camps are housing Uighur Muslims.

The Chinese government operates “re-education camps” in Xinjiang, a province located in northwest China. The Chinese Communist Party officially calls the camps “vocational education and training centers.”

The labor camps allegedly force Uighur and other Muslim ethnic minorities to assimilate under the guise of countermeasures fighting extremism and terrorism. Detainees must attend indoctrination sessions and are forced to work in factories.

In 2018, the United Nations said there are a million ethnic Uighurs held in what appears to be a “massive internment camp that is shrouded in secrecy” in China. Randall Schriver, former U.S. assistant secretary of defense for Indo-Pacific Security Affairs, estimated that the number of detained Muslims could be “closer to 3 million citizens.”

“The (Chinese) Communist Party is using the security forces for mass imprisonment of Chinese Muslims in concentration camps,” Schriver told the Pentagon during a briefing in 2019.

Human Rights Watch published a report in September 2018 detailing the “Chinese government’s mass arbitrary detention, torture, and mistreatment of Turkic Muslims in Xinjiang and details the systemic and increasingly pervasive controls on daily life.”

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Black Lives Matter Intelwars LeBron James NBA Police Racism

LeBron James denies responsibility for violent attacks on police: ‘Not one time have I ever said let’s act violent toward cops’

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James denied that his criticisms of police treatment of minorities have contributed to or motivated violent attacks against police officers, USA Today reported.

James said he is just calling for accountability for police officers, but is not condoning or inciting violence against law enforcement officers.

“Not one time have I ever said let’s act violent toward cops,” James told reporters after a game Tuesday. “I just said what’s going on in our community is not okay. And we fear for that, and we fear for our lives. It’s something that we go through every single day as a black man, a black woman, and a black kid and a black girl, we fear that moment where we’re pulled over.”

James said he doesn’t believe all police should be demonized, but he’s seen and heard of numerous instances of racism by cops.

“I’ve never in my 35 years ever condoned violence,” James also said Tuesday. “I never have. But I also know what right is right and what wrong is wrong. I grew up in the inner city and the black community in what we call ‘the hood’ or ‘the ghetto,’ however you want to picture it. I’ve seen a lot of accounts first-hand of black people being racially profiled because of our color. I’ve seen it throughout my whole life. I’m not saying that all cops are bad. Throughout high school and things of that nature, and I’m around them all the time, and they’re not all bad.

“But when you see the videos of what’s going on, and you see them not only in my hometown, but all over America, you continue to see the acts of violence toward my kind, I can’t do nothing but speak about it and see the common denominator,” James said.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said James should match a $100,000 reward for the person who shot two sheriff’s deputies. The two deputies were shot by a person who walked up to their car and opened fire before fleeing, in what appeared to be a targeted ambush of the deputies.

The shooter fled, and police do not yet have a suspect in the shooting. The reward has since been increased to $675,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspect. James dismissed Villanueva’s comments.

“I have zero response on the sheriff,” James said.

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Black Lives Matter Gallup poll Intelwars NBA Nba ratings NFL NFL ratings Sports ratings

Gallup: Americans’ opinion of the sports industry has plummeted in the past year

Americans’ opinion of the sports industry has plunged in the past year, according to a recent Gallup poll. Of the 25 U.S. industry sectors examined, only the federal government (-20) and the pharmaceutical industry (-15) had a worse net negative rating than the sports industry (-10). In fact, more people had a very positive or somewhat positive view on pharmaceuticals (34) than the sports industry (30).

A two-week polling sample from August 2019 was compared to a two-week sample in August 2020, and Americans’ opinion of the sports industry declined drastically. There was a drop of 15 points in people who had a very or somewhat positive view of the sports industry, which edged out the travel industry that fell 11 points for the bottom spot.

Based on the recent survey of 1,031 American adults, only 30% of people view the sports industry in a positive light, compared to 40% of Americans who have a negative point of view. In 2019, 45% of Americans held positive feelings for the sports industry and only 25% viewed it negatively.

The nosedive in favorability comes as sports leagues have embraced social justice movements, including Black Lives Matter. The backlash is evident in political bases with positive views from Republicans crashing from +11 in 2019 to -35 in 2020, a devastating 46-point drop. Independents are also shunning sports; going from +26 in 2019 to -10 in 2020, a significant 36-point decrease. Democrats saw a slight decrease from +16 positive rating to a +11 rating.

Non-whites Americans’ positive opinions of the sports industry plummeted from +51 last year to only +16 this year, a 35-point decline. White Americans went from +4 in 2019 to -22 in 2020, a 26-point drop in positive outlook.

“Sports has been acutely affected by the twin events steering news and culture in 2020: the pandemic and the renewed movement for racial justice,” Gallup wrote. “The sports industry’s relationship with fans has been disrupted by the need to shrink its seasons and schedules and play to empty venues as a means of keeping fans and players safe.”

“At the same time, the greater social and political activism of players and, in some cases now, coaching staffs and entire leagues appears to have turned off Americans who disagree with their messages or the way they express them,” the article read. “The net effect at this point has been negative for the industry’s image.”

TV ratings also show fans’ frustrations in sports this year. The NFL suffered a double-digit ratings drop for its season opener that featured an overwhelming amount of social justice activism.

NBA ratings are down 20% during the playoffs. One poll found that 38% of fans are not watching the NBA because it’s “too political.”

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Charles Barkley ESPN Intelwars NBA Racism Stephen smith Steve nash White privilege

‘Full of crap’: Charles Barkley torches ESPN’s Stephen Smith for injecting race into hiring of white coach

NBA legend Charles Barkley unloaded on ESPN analyst Stephen Smith this week for suggesting that “white privilege” was responsible for the Brooklyn Nets hiring a white man as their new head coach.

The Brooklyn Nets announced on Wednesday that Steve Nash — a Hall of Fame player in his own right — would become the newest head coach to lead the Nets.

Smith responded by saying, “Ladies and gentlemen, there’s no way around this. This is white privilege. This does not happen for a Black man.”

What did Barkley say?

“I was very disappointed with some of the guys on television today talking about ‘white privilege,’ very disappointed,” Barkley said Thursday.

“They’re like, ‘Well, this doesn’t happen to black guys.’ I’m like, ‘It happened to Doc Rivers, it happened to Jason Kidd, it happened to Derek Fisher.’ So, I was really disappointed,” he continued. “When you have a responsibility, especially when you have to talk about something serious like race, you can’t be full of crap. You’ve got to be honest and fair.”

Barkley went on to agree that both professional and college athletics need more black head coaches, but again said that Nash’s hiring was not the time to scream “white privilege.”

“Steve Nash is a great player and a good dude. But I was so disappointed in some of these guys. I was like, ‘Dude, black guys have done this before.’ Now, do we need more black coaches in the NBA? Yes. Do we need more black coaches in college football? Yes. Do we need more black coaches in pro football. Yes. But this was the right time to say it today,” Barkley said.

Smith was even called out by fellow ESPN analyst Jay Williams.

“Come on SA. Steve Nash being chosen over Mark Jackson/Ty Lue is not ‘White Privilege’.. 2 superstar black athletes ultimately made the decision & we know who they are and what they are about,” Williams said.

How did Smith respond?

The ESPN analyst doubled down.

“I have a message to those who feel that I was wrong, that I need to apologize, that I don’t know what I’m talking about, etc., etc. I don’t give a d**n what y’all feel. Y’all can all kick rocks. I don’t give a d**n. I’m not budging from my position one inch,” Smith said.

“Black folks with no resume getting a job like that?” Smith continued. “I have been covering the NBA for 25 years… brothers do not get those opportunities.”


Stephen A. Smith isn’t budging on his stance about the Nets hiring Steve Nash | First Take

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Barack Obama Intelwars Jacob blake NBA Nba boycott Nba strike

Barack Obama advised LeBron James and other players during their Jacob Blake social justice boycott

Former President Barack Obama reportedly advised top NBA players during their boycott last week in protest of the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, the Athletic reported.

The NBA postponed two days of playoff games last week in response to the Blake shooting and subsequent protests and riots in Wisconsin. The protest began when the Milwaukee Bucks, without consulting other teams, decided at the last minute not to take the court for a playoff game against the Orlando Magic.

The call was reportedly initiated by Chris Paul, who is the president of the NBA players union, and included LeBron James and a small group of other players. CNN reported:

Katie Hill, a spokeswoman for Obama, told CNN in a statement, “As an avid basketball fan, President Obama speaks regularly with players and league officials. When asked, he was happy to provide advice on Wednesday night to a small group of NBA players seeking to leverage their immense platforms for good after their brave and inspiring strike in the wake of Jacob Blake’s shooting.”

“They discussed establishing a social justice committee to ensure that the players’ and league’s actions this week led to sustained, meaningful engagement on criminal justice and police reform.”

The league resumed play over the weekend, pointing to a decision by team owners to use NBA arenas as voting centers in November as a sign that the protest was successful. There were no predetermined goals for the spontaneous protest, so part of the challenge for the league was to figure out what exactly players wanted in order to start playing again.

The protest began Wednesday, and players met Wednesday night. James and Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard reportedly were adamant about cancelling the rest of the playoffs. CBS Sports reported that James didn’t feel like the team owners were doing enough, although what specifically that means in the context of police shootings is unclear.

Obama spoke with the players Wednesday night as well. By Thursday morning, again without detailed explanation, James had reportedly changed his mind and decided that it would be best for the season to continue.

NBA ratings have been down all season, even dating back to before COVID-19, and have continued to decrease since play resumed in July.

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BLM Intelwars Jacob blake NBA Nba boycott Nba social justice Nba strike police brutality

NBA players decide to resume playoffs after a few days of protesting Jacob Blake shooting with boycott

The NBA will most likely resume its postseason this weekend after taking a couple of days off to protest the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, ESPN reported.

“NBA playoff games for today will not be played as scheduled,” an NBA statement read. “We are hopeful to resume games either Friday or Saturday. There is a video conference call meeting scheduled later this afternoon between a group of NBA players and team governors representing the 13 teams in Orlando, along with representatives from the National Basketball Players Association and the league office and NBA Labor Relations Committee Chairman Michael Jordan, to discuss next steps.”

The protest began Wednesday when the Milwaukee Bucks decided not to take the court for game 5 of their playoff series against the Orlando Magic. The Magic were warming up on the court for the game, meanwhile the Bucks were on a Zoom call with Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, discussing what they could do about the unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The Magic also agreed not to play, leading to the other four teams scheduled for Wednesday night action to join the protest.

For a brief period of time Wednesday night, the NBA season seemed to be in jeopardy. Most teams wanted to resume, but two of the league’s highest profile teams—the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Clippers—voted to end the season altogether.

The strike began somewhat spontaneously with the Bucks, because the Blake shooting occurred in their home state. Because it wasn’t an organized protest, there was no clear goal or change being sought. Some players were reportedly upset that the Bucks decided to disrupt the season without consulting anyone else.

The spontaneous protest led to cancellation of Thursday’s games as well, but a question remained: What purpose would not playing games serve?

“The question we asked our players: What do you hope to accomplish by not playing the games?” a team executive told ESPN. “The answers were very different. I think that’s something everyone is still formulating for themselves. What’s the endgame here, and does not playing accomplish it?”

After hours of deliberation, the players have decided to return to games, likely due to a combination of financial considerations for both owners and players, and a lack of agreement on how a boycott could serve to make a positive social change.

Violent and destructive riots have broken out each night in Kenosha, Wisconsin, since Jacob Blake was shot seven times in the back Sunday by a police officer after resisting arrest during a domestic disturbance call.

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Bucks Intelwars Jacob blacke NBA protest

Breaking: Milwaukee Bucks refuse to play game in protest over police shooting of Jacob Blake; NBA postpones all remaining Wednesday playoff games

The entire Milwaukee Bucks NBA team refused to take the court in their game against the Orlando Magic on Wednesday, in protest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake — a black man — in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The league has postponed the rest of the night’s games in reaction to the Bucks’ decision.

What are the details?

Game 5 in the Bucks’ series against the Magic was originally scheduled for 4:00 p.m. ET. Ahead of the anticipated tip-off, Orlando players were on the floor taking practice shots, but returned to their locker rooms after it became clear that Milwaukee players would not be joining them.

Bucks senior vice president Alex Lasry voiced his support of the players’ decision to strike in protest, tweeting, “Some things are bigger than basketball. The stand taken today by the players and org shows that we’re fed up. Enough is enough. Change needs to happen. I’m incredibly proud of our guys and we stand 100% behind our players ready to assist and bring about real change.”

The NBA then announced it would postpone all of the games that had been slated for the evening, issuing a statement saying, “The NBA and the NBPA today announced that in light of the Milwaukee Bucks’ decision to not take the floor today for Game 5 against the Orlando Magic, today’s three games – MIL-ORL, HOU-OKC and LAL-POR have been postponed. Game 5 of each series will be rescheduled.”

NBA reporter Shams Charania
reported that the Bucks players were reaching out to speak with Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul (D). He also signaled that other teams were considering boycotting games, and tweeted that “NBA players have called for a meeting tonight in Orlando to determine next steps, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.”

According to Los Angeles Times national correspondent Matt Pearce, “The NBA collective bargaining agreement bans strikes, which means the Bucks are breaking their own contract to stop playing in protest of police violence.”

“But,” he added, “this is your reminder that there aren’t really illegal strikes, just unsuccessful ones.”

Players from other teams also cheered on the Bucks’ protest on social media, with Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James tweeting, “F*** THIS MAN!! WE DEMAND CHANGE. SICK OF IT.”

Blake, 29, was shot several times in the back by a Kenosha Police Department officer over the weekend, reportedly leaving him paralyzed. His shooting led to protests and violent riots in the city that is roughly 40 minutes from Milwaukee, adding to the ongoing nationwide demonstrations and unrest over racial injustice that began following the death of George Floyd in May.


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Intelwars Jay williams Luka doncic Montrezl harrell NBA Racism

Black ESPN host tears into NBA star who targeted white player with racial slur: ‘B**** a** white boy’

ESPN host Jay Williams unloaded on NBA player Montrezl Harrell Saturday after the Los Angeles Clippers’ power forward targeted Luka Doncic, one of the NBA’s top players, with a racially-charged comment.

What happened?

During a Friday playoff game between the Clippers and the Dallas Mavericks, Harrell and Doncic got into a scuffle, causing Harrell to call Doncic a “b**** a** white boy.”

From USA Today:

Harrell and Doncic got into a scuffle after the two players tripped each other at the Clippers’ defense end, and Harrell ended up on the court. Doncic told Harrell: “Stop flopping man.” That didn’t sit well with Harrell, who had to be separated from Doncic. After Harrell scored on Doncic later in the game, he appeared to hurl a racially-charged insult at Doncic.

What did Williams say?

In a lengthy response posted to Twitter, Williams slammed Harrell and highlighted the hypocrisy surrounding the reaction to Harrell’s comments, or more accurately, the lack thereof.

I am no lip-reader, but d**n Trez. D**n Montrezl. I can only imagine if Luka Doncic had said something like that to you and it got caught on tape. I can only imagine during Black Lives Matter how much of a big deal that would have been, considering today’s climate and state. It would’ve been a massive story. Luka would’ve lost all credibility in this space. Everybody would’ve been commenting on it. People would’ve asked LeBron [James] about it. People would’ve asked Kawhi [Leonard] about it. Everyone would’ve had some kind of statement about it.

But it’s not that big of a story because Trez said it to a caucasian person. It should be a big story because it’s not acceptable man. Look, I’m a hooper. I talk trash. I cuss people out. We can get into the nuances of whether that’s right or wrong, too. But what you said, when involving race in it? And I’ve heard people say this back in the day that basketball scenarios and playing hoops in the inner cities. I still didn’t find it acceptable then. I don’t find it acceptable now, especially when cameras are on you 24/7. Get lost in your battle, man. But don’t get lost in saying things like that.

“We don’t need that in today’s game, especially with everything that we’re fighting for as it related to equality,” Williams went on to say. “Not acceptable. Not acceptable.

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Breonna taylor Intelwars LeBron James MAGA Maga hat Make America Great Again NBA

LeBron James wore a customized MAGA hat to a game to make a social justice statement

NBA superstar LeBron James and his Los Angeles Lakers teammates wore customized “Make America Great Again” hats to Tuesday night’s playoff game against the Portland Trail Blazers, making a statement about the death of Breonna Taylor, Business Insider reported.

The hats had “great again” crossed out, with text added underneath, so the hats said, “Make America Arrest the Cops who Killed Breonna Taylor.” The message is a reference to the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department shooting of Taylor while serving a no-knock drug warrant in March.

“You know the situation that’s going on in Louisville, Kentucky,” James told reporters after the game, which the Lakers lost. “An innocent woman being killed, by the name of Breonna Taylor. A woman who had a bright future. Her life was taken away from her. There’s been no arrests, there’s been no justice, not only for her, but for her family. We want to continue to shed light on that situation because it’s just unjust. That’s what it’s about.”

Taylor’s death occurred on March 13, but wasn’t widely publicized nationally until May when it made national headlines shortly after video of the killing of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia was released to the public. Although one of the three officers involved in the Taylor shooting has been fired, no charges have been filed and the investigation is ongoing.

LMPD officers had a no-knock warrant for Taylor based on her suspected involvement with drug trafficking. When they entered the home in the middle of the night, Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker, a legal gun owner, fired one shot at the officers, who responded by shooting back more than 20 times.

Walker was not hurt, but Taylor was shot eight times and died at the scene. Walker was charged with attempted murder of a police officer, but those charges were later dropped. He has told investigators he believed a home invasion was taking place, and didn’t know he was shooting at police officers. The officers were not in uniform.

Protests have been taking place in Louisville for months as people demand criminal charges against the officers. However, some legal experts believe that it will be difficult to bring charges against officers who only fired their weapons after being shot at first.

“The young man shot at them,” said Louisville lawyer and former judge Aubrey Williams, according to The Washington Post. Williams is a former head of the Louisville NAACP. “Whether he knew who they were or not, he shot at them. And at that point, the officers have every reason to shoot back. They are trained to defend themselves, and that is what they did.”

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Facebook Intelwars Kamala Harris Meme NBA photographer

NBA fires veteran photographer for posting offensive meme about Kamala Harris on Facebook

The NBA has cut ties with a freelance photographer who worked with the Houston Rockets for more than three decades, after the league discovered he posted a meme on Facebook that referred to Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) by a derogatory term.

What are the details?

Shortly after presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden announced that Harris would be joining his ticket, Houston-based freelance photographer Bill Baptist shared a meme to his Facebook page that made fun of Biden’s campaign logo and his running mate that read, “Joe and the Hoe.”

When former WNBA star Sheryl Swoopes saw Baptist’s post, she shared it on her own timeline and called for the NBA to fire the photographer, writing, “So this guy works for the NBA but covers the Houston Rockets. Has been around for a while. Even worked for the Houston Comets. It’s amazing how people will smile in your face but eventually their true colors will show. @NBA and Houston Rockets he needs to GO!!! So disrespectful. Bill Baptiste (sic) shame on you!!!”

The NBA listened. USA Today reported that Mr. Baptist was “removed from the NBA bubble in Orlando” following the post, and the NBA issued a statement to KPRC-TV, confirming, “The photographer is an independent contractor and his services are no longer being used in Orlando.”

Baptist also issued a statement to the outlet, apologizing for his post and calling it “a horrible mistake.”

“I deeply regret posting on my Facebook page a phrase that I saw and copied from others as a sample of some people’s reactions to Biden’s selection of Senator Harris as his choice for VP,” he wrote. “The phrase I posted does not reflect my personal views at all. I should not have been so insensitive to post the statements by others. I sincerely apologize to all of those who have rightfully been offended and I have taken the post down from my FB page. It was a horrible mistake on my part.”

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Anthem kneeling Black Lives Matter Intelwars National anthem protests NBA social justice

Commentary: Let’s end the absurdity surrounding anthem kneeling

You can kneel during the national anthem and still love America and support police officers. You can stand during the national anthem and still believe black lives matter and police brutality is wrong.

The primary narrative surrounding a peaceful protest should be the issue being protested, not an obsessive accounting of which individuals choose to participate and which ones don’t.

Everyone who kneels during the national anthem is not saying the same thing. Some of them are publicly expressing their opposition to police brutality. Some of them are protesting racial injustice in broader terms. Some are supporting Black Lives Matter. Maybe some of them actually do hate America. I imagine many, if not most of them, don’t really care and are just doing whatever it takes to not get criticized.

Everyone who stands during the national anthem isn’t saying the same thing. Most people stand during the national anthem because it’s just what you do during the national anthem. Some people are standing because they don’t want to get lumped in with Black Lives Matter, the organization. Most people who stand are probably not making a statement of protest against black people; they are just doing a normal thing.

It doesn’t take any particular courage to stand for the national anthem, or to kneel for the national anthem. There aren’t any real consequences for either choice. Let’s stop with the hero worship of people who make the choice we prefer.

It’s ridiculous to approach a black American who chooses to stand for the national anthem and ask him whether he believes in black lives matter. It’s actually a stupid question.

A movement seeking justice for black people is destined to fail when we start turning on each other. When a movement called “Black Lives Matter” begins attacking black people who don’t act a certain way, it has lost its way. To say “black lives matter” is a lie if it excludes black people who express themselves differently than the mainstream.

Sometimes basketball players just want to be basketball players, and they should be allowed to do that. The issue of race in America is complicated, and many professional athletes simply aren’t informed enough to have helpful thoughts on it. We should encourage them to learn, but not force them to be activists.

Sometimes basketball players want to be activists, and they should be allowed to do that. If they choose to take on that role, they should take care to be informed and wise in how they express themselves, because they will be held to account for their activism. It’s fair game if that’s a path they choose.

If you really like sports, but you can’t stand to watch games because some people don’t stand for the national anthem before the game starts, that’s a bit silly, but it’s your right to turn away. It’s worth asking, though, whether you hold other organizations to that same standard for them to earn your business, and if not, why that might be.

Our society is really going insane. It’s like we’re incapable of reasonableness and moderation and compromise. Everything is a battleground.

We need to get rid of a lot of bad police officers. We need to create more accountability at a lot of police departments. We need to get some incompetent political leaders out of office in the process. We need to support the police officers who are willing to put their lives on the line for the members of their communities every day. None of that has to be a contradiction.

We need to fight racial injustice. We need to correct any system, big or small, that reinforces racial inequality. We need to be angry when a black person is unnecessarily and unjustly killed by police. We need to be angry when a person of any race is unnecessarily and unjustly killed by police. We shouldn’t try to make every white person feel guilty for all the racism of history. None of that has to be a contradiction.

We have a pandemic that has killed more than 150,000 people in this country, and put tens of millions of others out of work. We have literal riots in the streets almost every night in some cities in this country. We’re heading for an election where no matter who wins, the losing side is almost surely going to claim the results are fraudulent. Whether someone stands or kneels during the national anthem before a basketball game shouldn’t be anywhere near the top of our list of concerns right now.

If our nation fails some day, historians may note that our demise was largely due to the fact that we spent so much of our time fighting about things that don’t matter, while failing to address the things that do. This doesn’t have to be our story, but we’ve got to find some common sense.

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Anthem kneeling Intelwars National anthem protests NBA Oklahoma city thunder Rep. sean roberts

Oklahoma City Thunder players kneel during anthem even after threat from GOP congressman

Oklahoma City Thunder players took a knee during the national anthem before Saturday’s game against the Utah Jazz after a Republican state representative suggested the team should lose state tax benefits for the protest, Yahoo News reported.

Oklahoma state Rep. Sean Roberts (R) said in a Friday statement that the state should “reexamine” the team’s tax benefits if the players showed support for Black Lives Matter by kneeling during the anthem in protest of racism and police brutality.

“By kneeling during the playing of the national anthem, the NBA and its players are showing disrespect to the American flag and all it stands for. This anti-patriotic act makes clear the NBA’s support of the Black Lives Matter group and its goal of defunding our nation’s police, its ties to Marxism and its efforts to destroy nuclear families,” Roberts said in a statement. “If the Oklahoma City Thunder leadership and players follow the current trend of the NBA by kneeling during the national anthem prior to Saturday’s game, perhaps we need to reexamine the significant tax benefits the State of Oklahoma granted the Oklahoma City Thunder organization when they came to Oklahoma.”

Roberts suggested that funding should be directed to police rather than used to give tax breaks to the NBA franchise that came to Oklahoma City from Seattle in 2008.

All players on both teams knelt during the national anthem before Friday’s game. Only a referee remained standing. Chris Paul, the Thunder’s top player, is the president of the NBA players union, and was involved in the agreement with the league to allow players to wear social justice messages on their jerseys instead of their last names.

Kneeling in protest during the national anthem is so ubiquitous in the NBA now that the few team members who choose to stand for the anthem are singled out and questioned about their decision. San Antonio Spurs coaches Gregg Popovich and Becky Hammon stood for the anthem Friday. Two players, Meyers Leonard of the Miami Heat and Jonathan Isaac of the Orlando Magic, also stood.

Popovich declined to elaborate on his decision to stand, choosing instead to credit the league for allowing individuals to make their own decisions on the matter. Isaac explained that he supported anti-racism efforts, but emphasized his belief that only the Christian gospel was the answer to the problems in the U.S., not superficial demonstrations.

“I’m black…I’m not for racism and I don’t think that me not kneeling before the game and wearing a T-shirt makes me mean that at all,” Isaac said when questioned about his decision.

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Steve Kerr ripped for silence on China after complaining about critics of national anthem protests

Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr was slammed online for his silence on human rights abuses in China after complaining about critics of national anthem protests.

The NBA restarted its season on Thursday, the first games since shutting down in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic. So far, every NBA player, except one, has knelt during the national anthem.

Previously, the NBA had a rule requiring players to stand during the national anthem. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has dismissed the rule for the rebooted season due to the nationwide protests against police brutality and racism.

“I respect our teams’ unified act of peaceful protest for social justice and under these unique circumstances will not enforce our long-standing rule requiring standing during the playing of our national anthem,” Silver said on Thursday.

On Friday, Kerr defended the kneeling protests and addressed critics who don’t support players kneeling during the national anthem.

“With NBA games now in full force, the inevitable race baiting ‘kneeling is a sign of disrespect!’ tweets are coming,” Kerr tweeted. “Our message is clear: We love our country. And we also believe that this nation can and must do better to eliminate racism and bigotry. That is why we kneel.”

Twitter users were quick to point out Kerr’s silence regarding China’s human rights abuses.

Kerr was mocked by conservative commentator Stephen Miller, who replied, “Steve, I speak for all Americans when I say we’re just relieved China has given you permission to once again speak out on important social and human rights abuses.”

National Review contributor Pradheep J. Shanker inquired, “Cool. You ready to speak out against China yet…or nah?”

Curtis Houck, Managing Editor at Newsbusters, asked, “Now how about ‘do[ing] better to eliminate racism and bigotry’ in China? Or do the concentration camps there not matter?”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) proposed that Kerr and NBA players respect the American flag.

“Here’s a better idea: stand for the anthem, to honor our Nation & the heroes who died for our freedom,” Cruz responded. “And then support school choice by donating 10% of your salaries for scholarships for low-income children to attend excellent schools.”

Noam Blum, Tablet Magazine associate editor, asked, “Any word on ESPN’s expose of your training program in Xinjiang or nah?”

The tweet was a reference to a bombshell report in ESPN that exposed violence in the NBA’s training academies in China. The report features testimony from anonymous American coaches who were employed at the NBA training academies, including one in the Xinjiang province where more than a million Uighur Muslims are imprisoned.

The report alleges that young players were physically abused by Chinese coaches and were not provided proper schooling, despite Silver promising that education would be “central” to the program.

“Imagine you have a kid who’s 13, 14 years old, and you’ve got a grown coach who is 40 years old hitting your kid,” a coach told ESPN. “We’re part of that. The NBA is part of that.”

The NBA specifically told the coaches not to reveal the abuse.

Last month, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) blasted the NBA for its close relationship with China.

The NBA is allowing players to select a message that will be displayed on the backs of their jerseys. The list of 29 approved social and political messages includes “Black Lives Matter,” “How Many More,” “Power to the People,” “I Can’t Breathe,” and “Anti-Racist.”

Hawley wrote a letter to Silver, which asked why there were no phrases “in support of victims of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), including the people of Hong Kong, whose remaining freedoms are being extinguished by the CCP’s newly-enacted national security law.” Hawley challenged Silver to allow NBA players to stand up for the Uighur Muslims who are being held in Chinese internment camps.

ESPN reporter Adrian Wojnarowski lashed out at Hawley by cursing at the Missouri senator. Wojnarowski apologized and was suspended by ESPN for two weeks for the outburst.

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Only one NBA player so far has stood for the anthem. Here’s how he explained his decision.

A single player in the NBA has stood alone—literally—during America’s national anthem since games resumed this week after a 20-week break due to COVID-19.

During a press conference on Friday, that player, Jonathan Isaac of the Orlando Magic, explained why.

What are the details?

After noting that he did not kneel during the playing of “The Star Spangled Banner” or wear a Black Lives Matter shirt along with all the other players, a reporter asked Isaac (who is black), if he believes black lives matter.

“Absolutely,” Isaac replied. “I believe that black lives matter. A lot went into my decision and part of it is, first off, it’s my thought that kneeling or wearing a Black Lives Matter t-shirt don’t go hand-in-hand with supporting black lives.”

“I think when you look around, racism isn’t the only thing that plagues our society. That plagues our nation, that plagues our world,” he continued. “I feel like coming together on that message that we want to get past not only racism but everything that plagues us in society I feel like the answer to it is the Gospel.”

According to
CNN, Isaac reiterated, “For me Black lives are supported through the Gospel. All lives are support through the Gospel. We all have things that we do wrong and sometimes it gets to a place that we’re pointing fingers at who’s wrong is worst. Or who’s wrong is seen, so I feel like the Bible tells us that we all fall short of God’s glory. That will help bring us closer together and get past skin color, and get past anything that’s on the surface and doesn’t really get into the hearts of men and women.”

Isaac also waded into the current political tone of the U.S., saying, “I feel like a lot of people have a stake in it with the flag, a lot of people have a stake in it for the president, I think a lot of people have a stake in it with hating the flag or not hating it or hating the president or whatever.”

He added, “I’m black…I’m not for racism and I don’t think that me not kneeling before the game and wearing a t-shirt makes me mean that at all.”


Jonathan Isaac explains decision to stand during national anthem | NBA on ESPN

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Anything else?

In a statement on Friday, the owners of the Orlando Magic expressed full support of their players kneeling during the anthem “to send a powerful message condemning bigotry, racial injustice and the unwarranted use of violence by police, especially against people of color.”

The statement did not mention Isaac’s lone stance for the stars and stripes, but
BleacherReport reported that according to ESPN, Magic head coach Steve Clifford said, “himself, the players and the franchise support Jonathan Isaac’s decision to stand during the anthem and not kneel.”

The coach also passed along that Magic guard Evan Fournier said of Isaac’s move, “That’s his choice and he doesn’t need to [explain].”

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anthem Black Lives Matter Intelwars Jonathan isaac Kneeling NBA Protests

Only one NBA player so far has stood for the anthem. Here’s how he explained his decision.

A single player in the NBA has stood alone—literally—during America’s national anthem since games resumed this week after a 20-week break due to COVID-19.

During a press conference on Friday, that player, Jonathan Isaac of the Orlando Magic, explained why.

What are the details?

After noting that he did not kneel during the playing of “The Star Spangled Banner” or wear a Black Lives Matter shirt along with all the other players, a reporter asked Isaac (who is black), if he believes black lives matter.

“Absolutely,” Isaac replied. “I believe that black lives matter. A lot went into my decision and part of it is, first off, it’s my thought that kneeling or wearing a Black Lives Matter t-shirt don’t go hand-in-hand with supporting black lives.”

“I think when you look around, racism isn’t the only thing that plagues our society. That plagues our nation, that plagues our world,” he continued. “I feel like coming together on that message that we want to get past not only racism but everything that plagues us in society I feel like the answer to it is the Gospel.”

According to
CNN, Isaac reiterated, “For me Black lives are supported through the Gospel. All lives are support through the Gospel. We all have things that we do wrong and sometimes it gets to a place that we’re pointing fingers at who’s wrong is worst. Or who’s wrong is seen, so I feel like the Bible tells us that we all fall short of God’s glory. That will help bring us closer together and get past skin color, and get past anything that’s on the surface and doesn’t really get into the hearts of men and women.”

Isaac also waded into the current political tone of the U.S., saying, “I feel like a lot of people have a stake in it with the flag, a lot of people have a stake in it for the president, I think a lot of people have a stake in it with hating the flag or not hating it or hating the president or whatever.”

He added, “I’m black…I’m not for racism and I don’t think that me not kneeling before the game and wearing a t-shirt makes me mean that at all.”


Jonathan Isaac explains decision to stand during national anthem | NBA on ESPN

www.youtube.com

Anything else?

In a statement on Friday, the owners of the Orlando Magic expressed full support of their players kneeling during the anthem “to send a powerful message condemning bigotry, racial injustice and the unwarranted use of violence by police, especially against people of color.”

The statement did not mention Isaac’s lone stance for the stars and stripes, but
BleacherReport reported that according to ESPN, Magic head coach Steve Clifford said, “himself, the players and the franchise support Jonathan Isaac’s decision to stand during the anthem and not kneel.”

The coach also passed along that Magic guard Evan Fournier said of Isaac’s move, “That’s his choice and he doesn’t need to [explain].”

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NBA won’t enforce rule requiring players to stand for the national anthem, citing ‘unique circumstances’

While the NFL struggled for years to manage its national anthem kneeling controversy, including botched attempts to ban the protests, the NBA avoided the issue with an established rule requiring players to stand during the national anthem — a rule that the players followed without incident.

Things have changed, however, and now NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has made the decision not to enforce the rule, allowing entire teams to kneel during the anthem as a form of social justice protest.

“I respect our teams’ unified act of peaceful protest for social justice and under these unique circumstances will not enforce our long-standing rule requiring standing during the playing of our national anthem,” Silver said Thursday, according to the New York Times’ Marc Stein.

Many players and coaches knelt during the anthem Thursday and Friday, as teams played their first regular season games since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down U.S. professional sports in March.

In the past, it was noticeable and newsworthy when a player did not stand for the national anthem. Now, in the NBA, it’s more surprising to see a player choose to stand. That’s what Orlando Magic player Jonathan Isaac did Friday before his team’s game against the Brooklyn Nets.

While Isaac’s teammates got down on one knee wearing Black Lives Matter shirts, Isaac stood for the anthem while wearing only his game jersey.

TNT analyst Charles Barkley defended any player who chooses to stand.

“The national anthem means different things to different people,” Barkley said. “I’m glad these guys are unified. If people don’t kneel, they’re not a bad person. I want to make that perfectly clear. I’m glad they had unity, but if we have a guy who doesn’t want to kneel because the anthem means something to him, he should not be vilified.”

Isaac didn’t give a reason for his choice to stand, but he has commented on social justice issues in the past, including after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May.

“Just because we are in the position of being an NBA player, it doesn’t give us automatically an understanding or insight to issues that happen around us,” Isaac said in June. “But I think because we have the ear of so many it’s important for us to be diligent, to be vocal, but in a balanced way.”

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Charles Barkley defends sports players who refuse to kneel, and social media is melting down

Basketball icon Charles Barkley weighed into the debate over sports players kneeling for the Black Lives Matter movement and he’s earning a lot of angry responses online over it.

Barkley made the comments on “The Inside Guys” on TNT on Thursday after Shaquille O’Neal applauded players and coaches for kneeling before the first NBA game of the season.

“When you have you platform, I think it is very important that you speak up, it’s very important that you speak your mind but when you talk about change, you also have to talk about protocol,” said O’Neal.

“So we use our voice to bring awareness,” he continued. “Now we have to go vote, we have to vote our mayors in, our mayors are to appoint new chiefs of police. We have to vote senators and politicians. It doesn’t just stop with sending our a tweet or yelling all the time.”

“The thing is, listen, that’s gonna mean different things to different people,” responded Barkley.

“I’m glad these guys are all unified, but if people don’t kneel, they’re not a bad person,” he added.

“I want to make that perfectly clear, I’m glad they had unity,” Barkley concluded, “but if we have a guy who doesn’t want to kneel because the anthem means something to him, he should not be vilified.”

He went on to criticize players for only speaking out on social justice and said that they should go into black communities and help create businesses and be active in creating change.

Social media responds

Barkley’s comments were quickly picked up on social media and circulated by those supporting him and those criticizing him.

“Charles Barkley, we are worried about the people who ARE kneeling being vilified,” responded one sports account on Twitter.

“Charles Barkley does not speak for black people – he speaks for his white golf buddies who he doesn’t want to disappoint. He’s more worried about white men view him than how black women do. He spent years tap dancing on TV and now he’s a black leader – says who?” said another Twitter user.

“If Charles Barkley were in the wrong time at the wrong place, he would be a victim of police brutality and he’s out here supporting it,” said another commenter.

“Charles Barkley need to shut the f*** up… honestly,” said another simply.

Others, like former NBA player and ESPN host Jay Williams agreed with Barkley’s response.

“I firmly stand by what Charles Barkley just said,” tweeted Williams.

“If you choose not to kneel for the national anthem, you are NOT a bad person and you should NOT get vilified,” he added.

Barkley most recently made headlines when he called out black entertainers and sports figures by name for making anti-Semitic comments while advocating for black empowerment.

“Man, what the hell are y’all doing?” he asked emphatically.

Here’s more of the discussion about NBA social justice:


The Inside Guys Discuss the Social Justice Messages On Jerseys For the Season Restart | NBA on TNT

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Children were physically abused in government-run NBA China training academies, former coaches claim

The NBA opened training academies in China, including in the Xinjiang province where more than a million Uighur Muslims are imprisoned, and young players in those academies were physically abused by coaches, ESPN reported.

American coaches who were employed in the NBA’s Chinese academies told ESPN they witnessed numerous instances of coaches physically punishing players, including hitting them in the face with basketballs and kicking them.

“Imagine you have a kid who’s 13, 14 years old, and you’ve got a grown coach who is 40 years old hitting your kid,” one coach told ESPN. “We’re part of that. The NBA is part of that.”

The coaches spoke to ESPN on the condition of anonymity because they were concerned about future employment opportunities and because the NBA specifically asked them not to comment — and also asked them not to tell others that the league told them not to comment.

The NBA China training program utilized Chinese government-run facilities, with the idea that the league could take advantage of existing infrastructure and have access to the top talent. In reality, the arrangement meant the NBA had very little oversight and authority over how the program was run.

As a result, players were subject to abuse with no consequences for the abusers, and even though the program was supposed to have an educational component, there was evidence that players were rarely, if ever, going to school. Some of the American coaches could not tolerate these conditions, ESPN reported:

One requested and received a transfer after watching Chinese coaches strike teenage players, three sources told ESPN. Another American coach left before the end of his contract because he found the lack of education in the academies unconscionable: “I couldn’t continue to show up every day, looking at these kids and knowing they would end up being taxi drivers,” he said.

NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum told ESPN that the league had been made aware of some abusive incidents, but that they did what they could “given the limited oversight we had.”

A former league employee called out the NBA’s human rights hypocrisy.

“You can’t have it both ways,” the former employee told ESPN. “… You can’t be over here in February promoting Black History Month and be over in China, where they’re in reeducation camps and all the people that you’re partnering with are hitting kids.”

The NBA says it closed the Xinjiang academy in spring 2019, but two coaches disputed that claim to ESPN and claimed the league was seeking personnel for the academy well into the summer.

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NBA player under fire for saying COVID-19 is ‘overblown’ and being used for a ‘bigger agenda’

Denver Nuggets player Michael Porter Jr. is being criticized for saying COVID-19 is “overblown” and being used as part of a bigger agenda to control people, USA Today reported.

Porter, 22, acknowledged the seriousness of the virus, but said he believed there is more to the pandemic than just public health concerns. Here’s what Porter said during a social media Q&A session with fans:

Personally, I think the coronavirus is being used obviously for a bigger agenda. It’s being used for population control just in terms of being able to control the masses of people. Because this virus, the whole world is being controlled. You’re required to wear masks and who knows what will happen when this vaccine comes out. You might have to have the vaccine in order to travel, that’d be crazy. I’ve never been vaccinated in my life, I’ve never had any shots or anything like that. It could get crazy, but it’s definitely an agenda behind everything that’s going on right now, and all you can do is sit back and watch what’s going on and not get too emotionally involved. But it is a serious thing, it’s a real thing, but yeah, this is being overblown.

USA Today noted that the University of Missouri, where Porter attended school and played basketball for one year, requires vaccinations for measles, mumps, and rubella.

The comments sparked criticism from some members of the NBA media for downplaying COVID-19. Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns’ mother died due to complications from the virus earlier this year.

The NBA announced Wednesday that none of the 344 players tested since July 20 tested positive for COVID-19. The entire league is living and playing in Orlando at the Disney World campus to avoid risking outside exposure to the virus.

Porter has been criticized for his social media behavior in the past. After George Floyd was killed by Minneapolis Police Department officers in May, Porter expressed his sorrow for Floyd’s death, but also called for people to pray for the police officers instead of hating them.

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Charles Barkley calls out Nick Cannon’s anti-Semitism: ‘I don’t understand how you beat hatred with more hatred’

Hall of Fame NBA player Charles Barkley criticized recent anti-Semitic incidents involving entertainer Nick Cannon, former NBA player and ESPN analyst Stephen Jackson, Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson, and rapper Ice Cube.

“I’m so disappointed in these men, but I don’t understand how you beat hatred with more hatred,” Barkley said. “That stuff should never come up in your vocabulary, and that stuff should never come up in your heart. I don’t understand it and I’m never going to accept it.”

Barkley made the comments on Friday’s episode of his podcast “The Steam Room,” which he co-hosts with fellow NBA analyst Ernie Johnson.

“What the hell are y’all doing?” Barkley asked. “Y’all want racial equality. We all do. I don’t understand how insulting another group helps our cause. I don’t understand in any shape or form.”

“We can’t allow Black people to be prejudiced also, especially if we’re asking for white folks to respect us, give us economic opportunity and things like that,” the legendary basketball player said. “If you want respect, you got to give respect.”

“Especially at a time when you’re asking people to respect Black people, that black lives matter, this whole George Floyd thing has opened up a great dialogue to some of the problems in the black community,” Barkley pointed out. “I don’t want to alienate anybody, and to take shots at the Jewish, the white race, I just don’t like it, cause it’s not right.”

Barkley said that he could never say the hateful things that Cannon, Stephen Jackson, DeSean Jackson, or Ice Cube are accused of saying.

“I ain’t never gonna say something bad about another ethnic group,” Barkley said. “Never, ever. That’s not in my heart. That’s not in my soul. That’s not in my DNA.”

Barkley praised fellow NBA Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for condemning the anti-Semitism, but was shocked that there wasn’t more outrage over the anti-Semitic instances. Abdul-Jabbar wrote an article for The Hollywood Reporter titled “Where Is the Outrage Over Anti-Semitism in Sports and Hollywood?”

“Recent incidents of anti-Semitic tweets and posts from sports and entertainment celebrities are a very troubling omen for the future of the Black Lives Matter movement, but so too is the shocking lack of massive indignation,” Abdul-Jabbar wrote. “Given the New Woke-fulness in Hollywood and the sports world, we expected more passionate public outrage. What we got was a shrug of meh-rage.”

“These famous, outspoken people share the same scapegoat logic as all oppressive groups from Nazis to the KKK [Ku Klux Klan]: all our troubles are because of bad-apple groups that worship wrong, have the wrong complexion, come from the wrong country, are the wrong gender or love the wrong gender,” Abdul-Jabbar added. “It’s so disheartening to see people from groups that have been violently marginalized do the same thing to others without realizing that perpetuating this kind of bad logic is what perpetuates racism.”

Ice Cube reacted to Abdul-Jabbar’s column by likening him to Judas betraying Jesus Christ.

Last month, The Daily Beast wrote an article about the rapper, whose given name is O’Shea Jackson, titled “Ice Cube’s Long, Disturbing History of Anti-Semitism.”

ViacomCBS terminated Cannon after his anti-Semitic remarks resurfaced in a YouTube video where he presented conspiracy theories and defended Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan. Cannon blamed “systemic racism” for his firing.

Cannon eventually issued an apology after having a meeting with his employer Fox Broadcasting Company. Following the controversy, Cannon’s new talk show has been delayed at least a year.

DeSean Jackson shared several since-deleted posts on Instagram that promoted Louis Farrakhan as well as falsely quoting Adolf Hitler. The Philadelphia Eagles condemned the anti-Semitic posts.

Stephen Jackson, who has been a prominent figure in the Black Lives Matter movement, was lambasted for defending DeSean Jackson and promoting Jewish stereotypes.

Last week, Barkley warned that sports leagues trying to be woke are “turning into a circus, instead of trying to do some good stuff.”

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NBA shop banned ‘free Hong Kong’ message on jerseys, but did allow ‘KillCops’ — until it reversed course

The NBA incited outrage Monday after online users noticed the league’s official website would not let fans purchase customizable jerseys with pro-Hong Kong messages — but did allow anti-police and anti-Semitic messages.

According to the Washington Free Beacon, when a user typed “Free Hong Kong” as the customizable message on a jersey, the NBA’s official website returned the following message, “We are unable to customize this item with the text you have entered. Please try a different entry.”

However, the website did allow fans to purchase jerseys with the following phrases, among others:

  • F**k Hong Kong
  • Abolish cops
  • Sneaky Jews
  • Cancel Israel
  • Pence is gay
  • Trump has AIDS

One reporter, the Daily Caller’s David Hookstead, even called the NBA store’s customer service. A sales representative told him that he was not permitted to buy a jersey with the phrase “Free Hong Kong,” but could buy one that said, “KillCops.”

The NBA infamously kowtowed to China last year after a Houston Rockets executive praised the freedom movement in Hong Kong.

How did the NBA respond?

The NBA has not released an official statement, but social media outrage apparently made a difference.

According to Hookstead, fans can now purchase customizable jerseys with the message “Free Hong Kong,” while those with anti-police slurs are no longer available.

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ESPN reporter suspended for two weeks for sending ‘F*** you’ email to GOP senator

ESPN NBA reporter Adrian Wojnarowski has been suspended by the network for two weeks for a vulgar email he sent to a Republican senator, according to the New York Post.

The prominent NBA journalist will not be disciplined further for his actions. His suspension is without pay.

What’s this about? In response to a letter from GOP Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver regarding China, Wojnarowski sent Hawley a short message: “F*** you.”

Hawley sent the letter to the NBA community questioning why social justice messages related to Hong Kong are not allowed on the NBA’s list of approved content for the backs of players’ jerseys. Phrases like “black lives matter” and “I can’t breathe” are allowed.

The NBA has been criticized for silence and inaction in response to China’s human rights violations in an effort to protect lucrative business relationships with the communist nation. As pro-democracy protests raged in Hong Kong in resistance to mainland China’s communist influence, prominent NBA players and executives were hesitant to criticize China.

LeBron James, who is vocal on racial justice issues but who refused to say a negative word about China earlier in the NBA season, tweeted support for Wojnarowski, writing “Free Woj.”

How did Woj’s email become public? Hawley tweeted a screenshot of the email on Friday.

“Don’t criticize #China or express support for law enforcement to @espn,” Hawley wrote. “It makes them real mad.”

Wojnarowski apologized for the email after it became public.

“I was disrespectful and I made a regrettable mistake,” Wojnarowski said in a statement. “I’m sorry for the way I handled myself and I am reaching out immediately to Senator Hawley to apologize directly. I also need to apologize to my ESPN colleagues because I know my actions were unacceptable and should not reflect on any of them.”

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The woke ‘circus’: Charles Barkley torches sports leagues for caving to social justice mob

Basketball legend Charles Barkley is speaking out about the sports world’s decision to go woke.

As TheBlaze reported, for example, the NBA will allow players to display social justice messages on their jerseys once the season resumes later this month. Additionally, the phrase “Black Lives Matter” will be plastered on NBA courts.

Meanwhile, the NFL has said it was “wrong” to oppose national anthem protests.


Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

But according to Barkley, a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame, sports leagues are turning their games into a woke “circus.”

“My concern is turning this into a circus instead of trying to do some good stuff,” Barkley told CNBC’s “Power Lunch.”

Barkley explained that players should focus their energy on making real, lasting change — not on social justice messages and who is kneeling during the national anthem.

“We need police reform, we need prison reform,” Barkley said.

In fact, the former basketball MVP said sports leagues may face backlash from fans who look to sports for a reprieve from the stress of life — not to be lectured about politics.

“The last thing they want to do is turn on the television and hear arguments all the time. It’s going to be very interesting to see how the public react,” Barkley said.

Barkley’s comments are sure to incite backlash — which would not be new for the 11-time NBA all-star.

In 2017, Barkley was heavily criticized for refusing to outright condemn Confederate statues, instead urging activists to focus on reforming the black community.

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