Ted Cruz is once again taking heat on Twitter, this time for defending NBA players who are either refusing the COVID-19 vaccine or declining to say whether they’ve been vaccinated. But really, it’s the Texas senator’s choice of words for his defense, and the tragic irony behind them, that’s riling people up.
Though roughly 90 percent of NBA players are fully vaccinated at this point — topping the vaccination rate of the country as a whole — some of the league’s biggest names have refused to get the shot. According to NBA spokesman Mike Bass, “Any player who elects not to comply with local vaccination mandates will not be paid for games that he misses.”
On Wednesday, Cruz posted a tweet in which he pledged his support for specific players who have pushed back against the league’s vaccine mandate. He wrote, “I stand with Kyrie Irving. I stand with Andrew Wiggins. I stand with Bradley Beal. I stand with Jonathan Isaac.” Cruz then added the hashtag #YourBodyYourChoice.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) September 29, 2021
The sentiment is particularly ironic for a couple different reasons, the first being Cruz’s history with NBA players surrounding social justice issues. He and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban have very publicly sparred on the issue in the past.
So naturally, folks on Twitter were quick to point out Cruz’s about-face.
oh **now** prominent republicans want to stand with NBA players! https://t.co/1bnkmDenEI
— Sopan Deb (@SopanDeb) September 29, 2021
You didn’t think it was their bodies, their choice when their bodies were kneeling during the anthem though https://t.co/yzHeParnlG
— Yell in a War (@jelenawoehr) September 29, 2021
But for many, the most glaring piece of irony is that Cruz is the senator from Texas: the same state that recently passed one of the most restrictive abortion bans ever.
The law bans abortions as soon as a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which is typically around six weeks — before many women even know they’re pregnant. It also allows private citizens to sue abortion providers and anyone involved in facilitating abortions, including anyone who drives a woman to a clinic to get an abortion.
“You’re not allowed to say my body my choice, are we serious rn?! I guess that applies to NBA players but not women? You’re a miserable human,” former San Diego Padres pitcher Danny Sexton tweeted.
You can check out more digs at Cruz below.
Now stand with women in Texas.
Oh, right…. https://t.co/ce50d7otNF
— Ethan J. Skolnick, 5 Reasons Sports (@EthanJSkolnick) September 29, 2021
You’re not allowed to say my body my choice, are we serious rn?! I guess that applies to NBA players but not women? You’re a miserable human. https://t.co/0jgHS6zoQG
— Daniel (@danny_sexton3) September 29, 2021
How far does your #YourBodyYourChoice argument go? Enough for you to push back on the Texas Abortion law?
hmm didn’t think so https://t.co/jpzAVw1K1o
— Errol French (@itsairhole) September 29, 2021
I would really be sick to my stomach if Ted Cruz stood with me lmfaooooo https://t.co/iV8ObV4djr
— William Knife Man (@MickeyChristmas) September 29, 2021
Boy Id feel like pure DOO DOO if this traitorous asshole ever said he stands with me.
On another note, I thought Bron said this wasn't "political."
— Stephen White (@sgw94) September 29, 2021