A man in China who declared his love for Pokémon’s Team Rocket in a recent social media post was forced to apologize by his employer for posting content that “adversely affects society.”
The man, who works at Guangzhou Central Sports Co., Ltd., a company that organizes sporting events, said that he has always loved the antagonist trio, whose unrelenting schemes have taught him to be resilient.
“I love Team Rocket!” the post stated, according to SoraNews24. “No matter how many people say they’re bad guys, I’ve loved them since I was a little kid. No matter how many times they fail, they get back up and keep chasing after their dreams, and seeing them do that gives me courage too.
“Thank you, Jessie, James, and Meowth.”
In a bizarre turn of events, Guangzhou Central Sports released a statement shortly after the man’s post, apologizing on his behalf for posting “inappropriate content that adversely affects society.”
The company’s statement included a signed letter from the employee himself, declaring his love for his mother country and apologizing for “causing a controversy and hurting everyone.”
It can be thought that the man’s affiliation with Team Rocket was harmless, but his company allegedly took offense at one of two images that accompanied his post.
The man apparently included an image of the trio as well as a screenshot of an article about the controversy between China and the Houston Rockets.
Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey recently angered the Chinese government after tweeting in support of the Hong Kong protests.
The scandal escalated to affect not only the NBA’s reputation in China but a number of companies affiliated with both the league and Rockets.
In his apology, the man pointed out that he was referring to Pokémon’s Team Rocket, not to the Houston Rockets. However, the inclusion of the article screenshot did little to support his defense.
Weibo users commented on the matter:
“In this era, everyone is at risk [of getting in trouble].”
“What’s the difference between this and the Cultural Revolution?”
“Team Rocket and the Houston Rockets are not rockets. The real rockets are out in space.”
“Even if he actually supports the Houston Rockets, what’s wrong about it? Is anyone still free to speak truthfully?”
“Supporting the [Houston] Rockets is a personal choice. But as a big environment, I can tell why this company’s scared.”
Feature Image via YouTube