UPDATE: Chamath Palihapitiya, part-owner of the Warriors, put out a statement acknowledging he “came across as lacking empathy” without mentioning the Uyghurs by name.
One of the owners of the Golden State Warriors said he doesn’t care about China’s human rights abuses against Uyghurs.
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Chamath Palihapitiya, billionaire part-owner of the San Fransisco team, made the controversial comments on the “All-In” podcast recently as the United Nations has reported that China has put millions of Uyghurs in re-education camps.
“Nobody cares about what’s happening to the Uyghurs, okay. You bring it up because you care and I think it’s nice that you care. The rest of us don’t care,” Chamath Palihapitiya told the “All-In” podcast. “I’m just telling you a very hard, ugly truth. Of all the things that I care about, yes, it is below my line,”
The former refugee who has donated heavily to Democrats questioned whether a genocide is actually happening and also compared the U.S. government to the Chinese Communist Party, which he said isn’t a dictatorship.
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Boston Celtics player Enes Kanter Freedom, who is a Muslim, called out Palihapitiya on Twitter for selling “their soul for money & business” instead of standing for justice.
“When genocides happen, it is people like this that let it happen,” Freedom said. “Shame!”
The owner responded Monday night with “clarifying comments, noting that he “came across as lacking empathy.”
“As a refugee, my family fled a country with its own set of human rights issues so this is something that is very much a part of my lived experience,” he said. “To be clear, my belief is that human rights matter, whether in China, the United States, or elsewhere. Full stop.”
Michael Sobolik, a fellow at the American Foreign Policy Council, pointed out that he didn’t mention the Uyghurs by name and is “still drawing a moral equivalence between the US and the CCP.”
Watch the full exchange below:
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