And here we thought the political situation in the United States was a mess. On Monday of this week Oklahoma City Thunder center Enes Kanter was publicly disowned by his family over his support of a U.S. based cleric who may or may not be linked to the coup attempt against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
In a letter, published by Turkish media on Monday, Kanter’s father, Mehmet, disowned the OKC star and said, “With a feeling of shame I apologize to our president and the Turkish people for having such a son.”
At the center of the issue is Pennsylvania-based Fethullah Gulen, who is the leader of a Turkish faction that was blamed for a failed coup against Erdogan. Kanter’s father supports the current government and President Erdogan while the NBA player has chosen to remain loyal to the cleric, even going as far as to change his last name to the same as the cleric’s in the response to his father’s statement.
“Today I lost those who for 24 years I called…my family,”Kanter said in his statement. “My own family wanted me to change my surname. The mother who gave birth to me rejected me.”