Former World Series MVP turned-far-right political pundit Curt Schilling decided to weigh in on the Brittney Griner Russian detention situation. Of course, it’s important to note that Schilling remained largely silent on the issue until NBA superstar LeBron James offered clarifications on his comments about Griner. Because, for a far-right pundit, coming at LeBron is like the holy grail.
“I know this may seem like a stretch. But something like 300 million people understand ‘OBEY THE F-CKING LAW’, why is that such a challenge?” Schilling tweeted. “And why on earth should she NOT pay the penalty for breaking another country’s laws?”
I know this may seem like a stretch. But something like 300 million people understand "OBEY THE FUCKING LAW", why is that such a challenge? And why on earth should she NOT pay the penalty for breaking another country's laws? https://t.co/3SPJ5KJyA6
— Curt Schilling (@gehrig38) July 18, 2022
Let’s begin with the facts of the case in order to address Schilling’s “obey the law” stance.
In February Russian authorities detained Griner on drug charges after she was stopped at an airport near Moscow. Her detention has been repeatedly extended and the trial began on July 1; she has pleaded guilty.
Officials in Russia said they detained Griner after finding vape cartridges that contained hashish oil in her luggage; a criminal case looking into the large-scale transportation of drugs carrying a sentence of up to 10 years was later opened against her. Her lawyers have argued that the star basketball player had a medical prescription for the hashish oil and mistakenly carried the drug into Russia.
On May 3, the State Department said that Griner had been wrongfully detained but did not explain why or how it had made that determination. American officials have repeatedly accused Moscow of detaining U.S. citizens on questionable pretexts.
“This follows a pattern of Russia wrongly detaining & imprisoning US citizens,” Rep. Joaquin Castro, Democrat of Texas, wrote on Twitter.
Schilling’s you do the crime and pay the time shtick might hold up in a vacuum, but this is the real world and her crime involves two of the world’s superpowers in the United States and Russia.
Griner had vape cartridges with hashish oil. Does that fall under the phrase “large-scale transportation of drugs”?
Also, that Griner is an American citizen means there are certain rules and protocols that are to be followed in a legal situation. It is unclear if they were in this case.
Then there is the U.S.-Russia relationship, which is adversarial at best, and given the U.S.’ stance on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Griner looks to be a pawn in a high-stakes game of geopolitical chess.
Schilling likely knows all of this, and if he doesn’t that should tell you a lot about him.
The former Boston Red Sox pitcher is no stranger to running afoul of the law himself, which makes his stance on Griner hypocritical.
Shilling created a video game company called 38 Studios. In July 2010, the Rhode Island Board of Economic Development approved a $75 million guaranteed loan to 38 Studios. 38 Studios promised to bring 450 jobs to the state by the end of 2012. In May 2012, 38 Studios defaulted on its loan from the state and failed to meet payroll obligations to its employees.
As with most right and far-right leaning individuals, Schilling opposes the role of big-government. In 2011, Schilling touted the right wing “personal responsibility” talking point in an interview.
“There can be no question our country is in the worst economic crisis of our lifetimes. …[I]t falls on us, the individuals, to find a way out of our own personal crisis,” according to the Valley Advocate.
Seems Schilling is OK with big government when it is for his benefit.
38 Studios filed for bankruptcy in 2012 and Schilling and his other defendants had to repay the state of Rhode Island $61 million, which is still ongoing.
Schilling also has ties to former White House strategist Steve Bannon, who is currently on trial on contempt charges for defying a subpoena from the January 6th committee investigating the Capitol attack.
Schilling was on the advisory board of “We Build The Wall” where Bannon was chairman of the board. Bannon was arrested and charged with orchestrating a scheme to defraud hundreds of thousands of donors in connection with an online crowdfunding campaign that raised more than $25 million to build a wall along the southern border of the United States.
None of that sounds like the works of a “good Christian,” which Schilling claims to be.
But with individuals on the far right it’s never about actually adhering to what they lecture everyone else on. It’s just about screaming your position loudly and shouting down the opposition.
Just obey the law. That sounds a lot like, “just comply” or “don’t resist” when it comes to unarmed minorities dealing with police in this country. That’s what right-leaning pro-police individuals say over and over.
Yet no matter how many times we see no resistance and compliance via video, unarmed minorities end up dead.
People like Schilling don’t value the lives of non-cisgender white males. So of course he would attack LeBron and criticize Griner, they represent everything he doesn’t like about his America.