The big balls are in tennis, not basketball.

And yes, that’s crass. But it is an apt comment – and in a woke world, apt is in short supply. So our lede may be crass but it is our effort, however feeble, to call attention to the powerful as they prostrate to China.

But if the millionaires and billionaires in the NBA regularly bow to China what words can be used – at least words fit to print here – to describe what Senate Democrats did for China last week?

But let’s back up. We need to take a second serve, so to speak, and review news out of the tennis world.

Peng Shuai is a successful professional tennis player. She is also Chinese. The two – success and China – can work together as long as the successful person remembers her place.

And that place is always subservient (Read: prostrated) to the Communists who run China.

Ms. Shuai forgot that.

Last month she wrote about being raped by a powerful Communist. Big-shot Communists do not like bad publicity, so things quickly went bad for Ms. Shuai.

Friends, relatives and colleagues raised the alarm – worldwide – that they believe Ms. Shuai is imprisoned. A “news conference” orchestrated by the commies did little to convince them otherwise. Her well-being and health continue to be a concern.

And that’s why the Women’s Tennis Association suspended all its tournaments in China.

“I don’t see how I can ask our athletes to compete in China when Peng Shuai is not allowed to communicate freely and seemingly been pressured to contradict her allegation of sexual assault,” WTA head Steve Simon said.

Despite the huge financial losses the WTA will incur, the organization remains steadfast: No more tournaments in China until Ms. Shuai’s safety and well-being are guaranteed.

Contrast that to the National Basketball Association.

The NBA not only fires executives who tweet support for protesters in Hong Kong, it seemingly orders players benched who dare say truth about the slavery, rape, torture and murder of the Uyghurs by Chinese Communists.

But worship of the yuan is not limited to the NBA.

Just last month news broke that Disney – as in Mickey Mouse – removed an episode from the Hong Kong edition of “The Simpsons” to appease their overlords in the Chinese government.

(Disney owns 20th Century Studios, which produces “The Simpsons.”)

The irony here is delightful.

The episode in question included a gag about censorship in China. The gag referenced Tiananmen Square.

It seems China is sensitive about that place and the massacre for which it is known. So sensitive, in fact, that they don’t ever want to hear about Tiananmen Square. Ever.

The writers at “The Simpsons” don’t care for orders issued by China – but Disney executives certainly do. They cancelled the episode.

So get this: Disney, a U.S. company, censored a program about censorship – in China.

Write that in a movie script and nobody would believe it.

But, as it turns out, this is fairly common. The people running Hollywood are quite sensitive about offending China.

Whether it is removing the flag of Taiwan, or references to Tibet, there are many examples of Hollywood bigwigs catering to Chinese censorship and willingly altering movies at their request.

So devoted is Hollywood to the Chinese market that some studios invited Chinese regulators on film sets to ensure they retain their status as first-class bootlickers.

But when it comes to slobbering over China it would be difficult to surpass the effort mounted by Senate Democrats last week.

You didn’t read about it, but Democrats blocked the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act. The amendment to the defense spending bill would ban imports of products from the region where China operates slave labor camps.

This was a reversal. The Senate passed it under unanimous consent in July – because they knew it would not matter. That is, they knew Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D) would not allow a vote in the House.

So the bill was effectively killed.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R), the sponsor, figured if he attached it to defense spending, Democrats would be forced to vote. But, just like in the House, Democrats leadership blocked the effort.

And yes, Democrats claim a mish-mash of parliamentary procedure prevented the vote. But any deeper reading shows that is not true. Besides, Democrats in the House could have approved the original legislation.

The fact is President Biden lobbied hard against it because he did not want to anger China.

So history repeats itself.

Just like in 1861, when Democrats had the opportunity to stand against slavery, they refused.

DAN HAMMES is the former publisher of the Gazette Record.

(1) comment

Chimo

As long as Biden is president, Republicans can simply be the resistance party. But at some point, a political party has to lead. As far as I can tell, Republicans don’t have a proactive agenda—in part because they haven’t been forced to come up with a coherent program and get the rest of their house in order. This laissez-faire attitude toward leadership is a disservice to the American public and the GOP.

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