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Sen. Kennedy recounts Kavanaugh hearings: It was ‘like the cantina bar scene out of Star Wars’

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At the opening confirmation hearing for Judge Amy Coney Barrett on Monday, amid partisan mudslinging and an air of seriousness, Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) brought up a scene from Star Wars: A New Hope (1977) with Barrett when talking about the treatment of then-nominee Brett Kavanaugh at his 2018 Supreme Court confirmation hearings.

“Now, look, judge. I’m not naive. I understand this thing can turn sour really fast, we all watched the hearings for Justice Kavanaugh,” the Louisiana senator said. “It was a freak show. It looked like the cantina bar scene out of Star Wars.”

“And, I know for someone who is unaccustomed to it, it hurts to be called a racist,” the senator continues. “I think it’s one of the worst things you can call an American. I know that it hurts to be called a white colonialist and I know it must hurt for someone of deep religious faith as yourself to be called a bigot.”

During the tumultuous Fall 2018 confirmation hearings for Brett Kavanaugh, Democrats accused him of past sexism due to allegations made by three women, most notably from Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who accused him of sexual assault.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Boston Celtics Player Legally Changing Name to ‘Enes Kanter Freedom’ to Celebrate U.S. Citizenship

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Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images

Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter is celebrating becoming a U.S. citizen in an incredible way. The 29-year-old athlete from Turkey is having his citizenship oath ceremony Monday, and will legally change his name to Enes Kanter Freedom.

Kanter is an outspoken human rights advocate who had his Turkish passport revoked in 2017 after he criticized Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Mediaite reports “he has also criticized NBA stars Michael Jordan and LeBron James for not doing enough to help the Black community and not speaking out against exploitative labor practices in China respectively.”

Celtics head coach Ime Udoka told the Boston Globe the team is “all for” the player’s name change. Kanter’s manager says the player will complete his legal name change to have Kanter become his middle name and Freedom be his new last name at Monday’s ceremony.

“We congratulated him as a group for getting his American citizenship last week,” Udoka said. “That’s who Enes is, we’re proud of him. Enes is who he is. He’s passionate about his stances and the name change; you look at [Ron] Artest [who changed his name to Metta Sandiford-Artest in the middle of the COVID-19 outbreak] and guys that have done it in the past. It’s something he wants to express and we’re all for it.”

Kanter has already changed his official Twitter account to Enes Kanter FREEDOM with his new last name in all caps. Freedom made waves when he tweeted the following on November 18: Money over Morals for the ‘King’. Sad & disgusting how these athletes pretend they care about social justice. They really do ‘shut up & dribble’ when Big Boss [inserted Chinese flag] says so. Did you educate yourself about the slave labor that made your shoes or is that not part of your research?”

The tweet included photos of basketball shoes he wore painted with human rights depictions and phrases such as “hey still researching and getting educated?” as well as “I am informed and educated on the situation.”

The statement is with regard to his criticism of LeBron James’ partnership with Nike. “Nike remains one of the NBA’s biggest sponsors as both organizations feed off their partnerships with China” reports Mediaite. Kanter Freedom also made an offer to take Michael Jordan and Nike co-founder Phil Knight to China in order for the men to “visit these slave labor camps and you can see it with your own eyes.”

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