The Communist Party of China banned the wildly popular TV show “South Park” after the show blasted the communist nation for shaping American culture by forcing American companies to not do anything it deems offensive if they want to be able to sell their products and services in China.
“Now, those very same government censors, in the real world, have lashed back at ‘South Park’ by deleting virtually every clip, episode and online discussion of the show from Chinese streaming services, social media and even fan pages,” The Hollywood Reporter reported. “The draconian response is par for the course for China’s authoritarian government, which has even been known to aggressively censor ‘Winnie the Pooh,’ because some local Internet users had affectionately taken to comparing Chinese president Xi Jinping to the character.”
On Monday, South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone issued a statement trolling the Chinese government:
Like the NBA, we welcome the Chinese censors into our homes and into our hearts. We too love money more than freedom and democracy. Xi doesn’t look like Winnie the Poo at all. Tune into our 300th episode the Wednesday at 10 p.m. Long live the great Communist Party of China. May the autumn’s sorghum harvest be bountiful. We good now China?
Watch the full episode – https://t.co/oktKSJdI9i@THR article – https://t.co/nXrtmnwCJB pic.twitter.com/Xj5a1yE2eL
— South Park (@SouthPark) October 7, 2019
In a tweet late on Sunday night, South Park wrote: “You gotta lower your ideals of freedom if you wanna suck on the warm teat of China. #southpark23.”
You gotta lower your ideals of freedom if you wanna suck on the warm teat of China. #southpark23
Watch “Band in China”: https://t.co/GQEQL9ynCs pic.twitter.com/RepekgO3j9
— South Park (@SouthPark) October 7, 2019
The statement from Stone and Parker comes one day after the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the Houston Rockets received intense backlash from across the American political spectrum for apologizing for offending China after Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey tweeted out support for Hong Kong. Morey’s tweeting had sparked an immediate backlash from the Chinese government.
Morey tweeted out a graphic on Friday evening that stated: “Fight For Freedom Stand With Hong Kong.”
A bunch of us have shared this, but #ICYMI, here’s what @HoustonRockets GM Daryl Morey tweeted that offended his bosses and league officials pic.twitter.com/agjiLZjC2R
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) October 7, 2019
“The Houston Rockets suddenly find themselves in the middle of a geopolitical controversy that could put their chief front-office executive’s job in jeopardy,” The Ringer reported. “After general manager Daryl Morey expressed support in a since-deleted tweet for pro-democracy efforts in Hong Kong, the Chinese government, the Chinese Basketball Association, and various Chinese businesses quickly denounced Morey and moved to sever ties with the Rockets. As a consequence, league sources told The Ringer that Rockets ownership has debated Morey’s employment status and whether to replace him.”
On Sunday, NBA chief communications officer Mike Bass released the following statement:
We recognize that the views expressed by Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey have deeply offended many of our friends and fans in China, which is regrettable. While Daryl has made it clear that his tweet does not represent the Rockets or the NBA, the values of the league support individuals’ educating themselves and sharing their views on matters important to them. We have great respect for the history and culture of China and hope that sports and the NBA can be used as a unifying force to bridge cultural divides and bring people together.
Morey also apologized late on Sunday night for standing up for freedom, tweeting: “I did not intend my tweet to cause any offense to Rockets fans and friends of mine in China. I was merely voicing one thought, based on one interpretation, of one complicated event. I have had a lot of opportunity since that tweet to hear and consider other perspectives. I have always appreciated the significant support our Chinese fans and sponsors have provided and I would hope that those who are upset will know that offending or misunderstanding them was not my intention. My tweets are my own and in no way represent the Rockets or the NBA.”
2/ I have always appreciated the significant support our Chinese fans and sponsors have provided and I would hope that those who are upset will know that offending or misunderstanding them was not my intention. My tweets are my own and in no way represent the Rockets or the NBA.
— Daryl Morey (@dmorey) October 7, 2019
Tilman Fertitta, owner of the Houston Rockets, said in a tweet that Morey’s beliefs did “NOT speak” for the team’s values, writing: “Listen…. [Morey] does NOT speak for the [Houston Rockets]. Our presence in Tokyo is all about the promotion of the [NBA] internationally and we are NOT a political organization.”
Listen….@dmorey does NOT speak for the @HoustonRockets. Our presence in Tokyo is all about the promotion of the @NBA internationally and we are NOT a political organization. @espn https://t.co/yNyQFtwTTi
— Tilman Fertitta (@TilmanJFertitta) October 5, 2019