John’s Take: No special treatment for Brittney Griner


Brittney Griner has been held in a Russian prison since February after she was caught with hash oil in a vape cartridge at Sheremetyevo International Airport in Moscow.

This is clearly against the law. Griner now says she “accidentally” got the contraband.

It does not matter. She admits she got it and she pleads guilty, facing up to ten years in prison. It’s a long sentence, but actions have consequences.

Much to the dismay of Griner’s allies, President Joe Biden has so far refused to step in and pressure Russian President Vladimir Putin to release the WNBA star.

NBA superstar LeBron James weighs in now. “How can she feel like America has her back,” James said on his HBO show. “I would ask myself, ‘why would I even want to go back to America?’

With this statement, James is not only criticizing the way the United States has handled Griner’s situation, but he thinks she better not return home to America.

I disagree with LeBron James on a lot of things but we agree on this. Maybe Griner shouldn’t come back to the United States. Are we really worse off as a nation if she never returns to American soil? We might just be, depending on the circumstances.

According to LeBron, what should we do to free Griner? Swap him for international arms dealer Viktor Bout as Putin wants? Putting the rest of the world in jeopardy so that an overpaid basketball player – who admits breaking the law by seeking pay in Russia – can return to the United States?

Maybe Griner will take James’s advice and stay overseas. She’s not exactly an American patriot. She lobbied for the removal of the national anthem from WNBA games. If things are so terrible here, stay where you are. Stay here !

For LeBron, pleading for someone else to stay out of the United States because of how badly he was treated is rich. Lebron has earned over a billion dollars from his opportunities in America. It’s true. He is one of only three American athletes to be billionaires.

Where did he get those chances? I remember now, the United States of America. It must be easy to encourage someone else to stay in Russia, while you keep running the cash register here in America.

Let’s hope the White House doesn’t take the idea of ​​trading Griner for Bout too seriously. This thought is embarrassing. This idea is ridiculous. This thought is dangerous. It’s literally dangerous both from a practical point of view and for the precedent it sets. The idea of ​​giving special treatment to a well-paid basketball player who decided to get stoned in a repressive dictator state is ridiculous.


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