The NBA’s China Controversy is the Wake-Up Call America Needed
Are American Companies Doing Enough to Stand Up to China?
Earlier this week, we reported on the developing controversy surrounding Houston Rocket’s GM Daryl Morey’s tweet about the Hong Kong protests. His tweet: “Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong,” was promptly deleted, and NBA owners and officials scrambled to distance themselves from Morey’s statements. In the past few days, the controversy has exploded, and the implications extend far beyond the NBA.
The NBA has received bilateral condemnation from Washington, and many fans have expressed disappointment that the league would place profits from a foreign market over American values like freedom and democracy. Meanwhile, many Chinese businesses and the Chinese government have criticized or cut ties with the NBA. In China, the NBA’s statements were deemed insufficient to count as an apology. In America, the NBA’s response was not only seen as an apology, but as capitulation.
U.S. business relations with China extend far beyond the NBA. Many of America’s largest corporations are deeply embedded in the Chinese market. This very public demonstration of U.S.-Chinese business dynamics, specifically the capacity for U.S. companies to ignore human rights violations and squelch free speech in favor of profit, has been shocking to many Americans.
Do you think U.S. businesses should be held accountable for their relationship with China? Let us know in the comments below.
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