President Donald Trump has been drawing a lot of criticism for a remark he was reported to have said about immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador and African countries. It was alleged that Trump called them “s—hole” countries, although he has since denied making the derogatory remark.
Raptors president Masai Ujiri was born and raised in Nigeria. He, among others, has taken issue with Trump’s alleged remark. Ujiri emigrated to the United States and has worked his way up to the prestigious position he now holds, which proves that it’s not about where someone is from, as it’s their body of work that matters.
Ujiri weighed in on Trump’s alleged “s—hole” remark in speaking to reporters on Friday.
“I don’t think it’s fair, and I don’t think it’s what inspiring leadership can be,” Ujiri said, via ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. “What sense of hope are we giving people if you are calling where they live — and where they’re from — a s—hole? I’ve spent a lot of time in the United States and Canada and I am grateful for the opportunities that I’ve been given by people, and the game of basketball, and the NBA. As leaders, I think we have to give people in many places a chance to have success, not continue to put those people down.”
“We have to inspire people and give them a sense of hope. We need to bring people along, not ridicule and tear them down. This cannot be the message that we accept from the leader of the free world.”
Those are powerful words from the Raptors president, who, at only 47 years of age, has already accomplished much during his career. He was hired by the Nuggets in 2010 as the team’s general manager, and was named the NBA’s Executive of the Year in 2012-13.
Ujiri has also been involved in humanitarian endeavors, as he is the program director for the NBA’s Basketball Without Borders program. So it’s clear that just because he came from a developing country, it doesn’t mean that he’s incapable of holding a prestigious title and helping spark change in the world.