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Republicans want to cancel baseball after exploding over 'cancel culture'

GOP lawmakers are calling for a boycott of Major League Baseball after it moved the All-Star Game out of Georgia in protest of the state’s racist voter suppression law.

By Emily Singer - April 05, 2021
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Mo Brooks

Despite railing against so-called “cancel culture” for weeks, Republicans — including Donald Trump himself — are waging a battle to punish Major League Baseball over its protest of Georgia’s racist voter suppression law.

Multiple GOP lawmakers have vowed to try to revoke the league’s antitrust exemption in retaliation for its decision to move the 2021 All-Star Game out of Georgia because of its recently signed voter suppression law. Others, like Trump, have urged a boycott of MLB baseball altogether.

The effort is in direct opposition to Republicans’ belief that “cancel culture” — a phrase referring to cultural boycotts of people or institutions over their political views or endeavors — is real, bad, and a threat to free speech. The GOP has made cancel culture a defining issue of the party, spending weeks falsely saying that Dr. Seuss was a cancel culture victim.

Their effort to cancel baseball began on Friday, after the league issued a statement on Friday saying the league “fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box.”

The MLB’s Players Alliance — a group of current and former Black MLB players — also issued a statement supporting the move.

“We want to make our voice heard loud and clear in our opposition of the recent Georgia legislation that not only disproportionately disenfranchises the Black community, but also paves the way for other states to pass similarly harmful laws based largely on widespread falsehoods and disinformation,” the Player’s Alliance wrote.

Yet Republicans are up in arms, saying Georgia’s law is not about suppressing the vote, but rather about “election integrity.”

However, a New York Times analysis found that the law does, in fact, have 16 provisions that make it harder to vote. Aside from requiring ID to vote by mail, limiting the use of ballot drop boxes, and making it a crime to hand out food or drink to voters waiting in long lines, the law also makes it harder for voters who accidentally show up at the wrong polling place to vote to cast a ballot.

In light of @MLB‘s stance to undermine election integrity laws, I have instructed my staff to begin drafting legislation to remove Major League Baseball’s federal antitrust exception,” Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) tweeted on Friday, an effort multiple other Republican House and Senate members signed on to.

On Saturday, Trump joined the conversation, telling his supporters to not only boycott Major League Baseball, but also the other companies like Delta Air Lines and Coca-Cola that have come out against the voter suppression law.

“Don’t go back to their products until they relent. We can play the game better than them,” Trump wrote, before again repeating the lie that the 2020 election was stolen and ending with “Happy Easter!”

Vocal Trump defenders in the House — who have in the past decried cancel culture — cheered Trump’s call to cancel Major League Baseball.

“Republicans are fans most likely able to afford Major League Baseball obscene ticket, parking & food prices. #MLB should stay out of politics, or at least adopt pro-America political positions, or risk losing their #GOP fan base,” Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) tweeted, suggesting that the only acceptable political positions MLB can take are ones Republicans agree with. “Conservatives know how to boycott, too!”

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


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