Dave Zirin: Anti-War Hoopster Wins NBA's MVP
Dave Zirin: Anti-War Hoopster Wins NBA's MVP:
"By electing Steve Nash the NBA's Most Valuable Player, the pro basketball media made the day of everyone who plays hoops on Friday and protests the US war machine on Saturday.
Nash was the first high profile athlete to come out against Dick Cheney's "war of a generation" showing up at the 2003 All-Star game in 2003 wearing a T-shirt that read, "Shoot baskets not people." When questioned on his incendiary attire, Nash said, "I think that war is wrong in 99.9 percent of all cases. I think [Operation Iraqi Freedom] has much more to do with oil or some sort of distraction, because I don't feel as though we should be worrying about Iraq." He also showed far more prescience than Bush, Cheney, Colin Powell or Condoleeza Rice saying, "I think that Saddam Hussein is a crazy dictator but I don't think he's threatening us at this point in time. We haven't found any nuclear weapons -- no matter what anyone says -- and that process is still under way. Until that's finished and decided I don't think that war is acceptable." He then reiterated his position that, "Unfortunately, this is more about oil than it is about nuclear weapons."
Nash also took issue with the pro-war media. Two years before the New York Times and The Washington Post were forced to issue apologies for their slavish, slothful pro-war coverage, Nash said, "I think a lot of what we hear in the news is misleading and flat-out false, so I think it's important for us to THINK deeper and find out what is really going on." He didn't backpedal from this stance despite criticism from his boss at the time, Mavs owner Mark Cuban and Spurs center David Robinson who said, ""If it's an embarrassment to [Nash] maybe [he] should be in a different country." Nash also was profiled in one mainstream paper earlier this season where he casually mentioned that the last book he read was The Communist Manifesto."