Silence and Brotherhood

jsbcello 9:23 am Wed Oct 9 EDT 2 ups @ 0.75 Removed

Many, including myself, are disappointed that we havent heard anything from Kerr or Popovich or LeBron. Ive seen a lot of posts on this sub saying that this proves that it all really comes down to money. Thats true in a sense, but not in the selfish one that is usually implied. I think if it the calculations were purely about their personal finances, they would speak out. But they arent, not even remotely. It is virtually a guarantee that if one of them spoke out, China would lash out against the entire team organization. Would do as much damage (and they can clearly do a lot) to as many people related to the team as possible. Think about what that means. In basketball (and all team sports) it is as close to divine mandate as anything can be that the team comes first, that the team is a sacred brotherhood. And I think for many of the coaches and players (and especially for the most admirable ones) that really is true. Think about who your closest friends and co-workers are. Would you speak out about Hong Kong if it would result in many of them losing a significant portion of their income? And if, as is almost certainly the case for Kerr and Popovich and LeBron, many of them did not want you to, and would blame you for the resulting harm, and would tell you that you had no right to do that to them just to make a political point about some country across an ocean? Perhaps the relative consequences would not be as severe as in my example. But perhaps they would be. If theres one of thing this has shown, its that China has a terrifyingly vast reach. The consequences would certainly be serious. We are asking these people not just to hurt themselves, but to hurt those around them. Does that mean its wrong for us to ask? No, because its still the right thing to do. The fact that its a very hard choice doesnt mean we cant make judgments about what the right choice is, or express our disappointment when they dont make that choice. Sometimes there are no good choices, and you just have to make the most-right one. Supporting Hong Kong is the most-right one, in this case. But it would take someone truly, generationally extraordinary to do that. We can wish that one of them were that person, and criticize them for not living up to that, but we shouldnt erase everything else thats good about them when they turn out not to be.