The 2022 Winter Olympics are set to take place in Beijing. Craig Shirley of Citizens for the Republic (CFTR), an organization founded by Ronald Reagan in 1977, is opposed to China hosting the Olympics due to its human rights violations against the Uyghurs.
"It would be like holding the Olympics in Hitler's Germany, except China has murdered more people and currently uses the Uyghurs as slave labor, benefiting American corporations," says Shirley. "It's a horrible situation – and we should not be endorsing it or sanctioning it."
The 1936 Summer Olympics were held in Berlin while Hitler was in power.
In a press release involving its call for a boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics, CFTR says more than a million Uyghurs have been rounded up by government authorities since 2017 and sent to "re-education" camps where their culture and heritage are stamped out.
If the U.S. were to opt-out or boycott the winter games, it would not be the first time that Team USA didn't show for the Olympics. On March 21, 1980, President Jimmy Carter announced the U.S. would boycott the Summer Olympics in Moscow – a decision made after Russia did not withdraw troops from Afghanistan as Carter requested.
"I have notified the Olympic Committee that with Soviet invading forces in Afghanistan, neither the American people nor I will support sending an Olympic team to Moscow," Carter said earlier that year.
"Jimmy Carter was morally right," says CFTR's Shirley. "The Soviets had invaded Afghanistan and Jimmy Carter said let's boycott the Olympics and he got some other countries to do so."
So where should the Olympics be held? In terms of where the Olympics should be held, Shirley points to an idea that Reagan had of holding them every four years where the games began: in Greece.