By Sonam Lhakyid
Enes Kanter is a Turkish-American pro basketball player that plays for the Boston Celtics, but lately, he’s made headlines as an activist that stands up against the Chinese government. The Chinese government is a communist dictatorship led by Xi Jinping. They colonize countries, and they force people from different countries into concentration camps. For example, they terrorize Muslim people by putting them in concentration camps against their will making them eat pork and drink wine, which goes against their religion.
They also colonized countries like Tibet. The government is openly taking people into these camps because some people know about what the Chinese government is doing to different countries. People are spreading this information onto social media. Enes Kanter noticed this and decided to make different kinds of videos for these people. Enes Kanter has made a video standing up for Uyghur people, an ethnic minority based in the Xinjiang region of China. He has also made a video about the Chinese government taking over Tibet as a country. Enes Kanter stood up to the Chinese Government by leading a rally on a Saturday with Uyghur, Tibetan, Hong Kong, and Taiwan activists on Capitol Hill.
Enes Kanter stood up for his beliefs, and human rights, when he spoke out to the media on October 22 this year for the Uyghur people. Kanter, who was banished from his native country of Turkey before becoming an American citizen, has a personal connection to the situation: the Uyghur people are of Turkish descent.
“There is a genocide happening right now, right now as I speak this message,” he said. Uyghur people are put into concentration camps and are forced to do slave work because of their Muslim religion. He mentioned that freeing Uyghur people from labour is important, so he spoke out for the act called “Uyghur Forced Labour Prevention Act ''.
According to VOA News, if the U.S representatives passed the act and signed it into law by the president, then it would be 100% sure that no item made with the forced labour law would make its way into the U.S.A.
Enes Kanter stands up for all of the countries that China has tried to silence, such as Tibet, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Uyghur. Also on Youtube, he made statements that show he supports Tibet by saying “Under China’s government’s rule, Tibetan people’s basic rights and freedoms are not existent.” In the same video, he said, “They are not allowed to study, and learn their language, culture freely. They are not allowed to travel through.”
In defence of the Uyghur people, Enes Kanter makes the argument that the Uyghur Labour Camps should be shut down. “Torture, rape, forced abortions, and sterilizations. Family separations, arbitrary detentions, concentration camps, political re-education, and forced labour” are all the things that the Uyghur people are going through at this moment, and Enes wants to let the world know.
Due to Enes Kanter talking about these issues, the Chinese government decided that the Celtics would never be played on the broadcast until they decided to apologize. Months passed, but Enes Kanter’s team was still not allowed to be broadcasted on Chinese television. The Chinese government said if the Celtics kicked Enes Kanter out of their team, then they would broadcast their plays again. The Celtics responded to that by keeping Enes Kanter on the team.
Enes Kanter has made it clear that he won’t back down, despite pressure from the Chinese government, In fact, he recently shared his message on his feet as well by writing “Modern Day Slavery” and “No More Excuses” on his sneakers during a game against Charlotte Hornets. He also recently changed his name to Enes Freedom.
Please note that any negative opinions expressed in this article are not towards our Chinese community here at East Side, or towards Chinese people in general, but towards the Chinese GOVERNMENT and their actions described above.