The way China is suppressing its minority Muslim population meets the United Nation’s definition of genocide. Despite that, Mark Cuban said in a recent interview he is “OK with doing business with China.”
On the latest episode of her podcast, journalist Megyn Kelly asked Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks, why the NBA has accepted millions of dollars from the communist country. The 62-year-old “Shark Tank” investor hedged, telling Kelly he condemns “all human rights violations.”
Kelly, however, kept pushing. Even though he did concede China is guilty of serious human rights violations — it is openly and systematically abusing Uyghur Muslims and persecuting Christians — he said he has no issue continuing to conduct business with the restrictive nation.
“I personally put a priority on domestic issues,” he said initially. “I’m against human rights violations around the world.”
It has been reported China is pushing many of its minority Muslims into labor camps, forcing them to undergo abortions, sterilizations, and torture.
With that in mind, Kelly asked why the NBA would accept “$500 million-plus from a country that is engaging in ethnic cleansing.”
Cuban told her he and others “have to pick our battles.”
“They are a customer of ours, and guess what, Megyn? I’m OK with doing business with China,” he said. “And so we have to pick our battles. I wish we could solve all the world’s problems. But we can’t.”
Kelly, in her trademark fashion, immediately called Cuban for failing to be unequivocal in his condemnation of China, telling listeners the billionaire investor was “uncomfortable” with her question because of his ties to the NBA, which has been weak on China.
The NBA’s hypocrisy regarding China was on full display at the start of the season this year, when the organization decided to emblazon its basketball courts with the words “Black Lives Matter” and replace players’ names on jerseys with social justice phrases. Commentators and frustrated fans immediately questioned why the NBA would stand up for supposed injustices in the U.S. while continuing to rake in millions of dollars from a country guilty of incredible human rights violations.
After all, much of the backlash first came in 2019, after Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey voiced his support for the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong. The tweets — which Morey later deleted — angered the Chinese government and resulted in Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta denouncing Morey’s words, saying he does not speak for the team. Fertitta condemned the general manager’s pro-freedom rhetoric after the state-controlled Chinese Basketball Association pulled Rockets merchandise from the shelves, severed its relationship with the team, and stopped airing its games.
Ultimately, the NBA kowtowed to China. In a statement, the organization called Morey’s words “regrettable” because they “deeply offended our friends and fans in China.”