Enes Kanter Goes After Nike; Invites LeBron James and Michael Jordan To Visit 'Slave Labor Camps’

Skip to first unread message


Oct 26, 2021, 11:11:26 AM10/26/21
Over the past days, Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter has gone after China
for their treatment of the Tibetan people and their imprisonment of the
Uyghur Muslims.

Now, Kanter is turning his attention to those who profit off of Chinese

In a video posted to his social media account on Monday, Kanter went after
Nike and founder Phil Knight for their unwillingness to speak out on
atrocities committed by the Chinese government.

“Your company says that you’re making a positive impact in our communities,”
Kanter said. “And that is true. Yes, you are. Here, in the United States,
Nike stands with Black Lives Matter. Nike stands with Stop Asian Hate. Nike
stands with the Latino community. And Nike stands with the LGBTQ community …
But when it comes to China, Nike remains silent.”

“You do not address [police brutality] in China, you do not speak about
discrimination against the LGBTQ community, you do not say a word about the
oppression of minorities in China. You are scared to speak up.”

Kanter went on to claim that Nike’s products are produced by forced labor,
specifically Uyghur forced labor.

Last year, The Washington Post reported that Chinese authorities had forced
hundreds of ethnic Uyghurs from the country’s western Xinjiang region to work
in a shoe factory that supplies Nike. A Nike spokesperson told the outlet
that the company’s suppliers are “strictly prohibited from using any type of
prison, forced, bonded or indentured labor,” and the company later said the
factory in question stopped hiring new workers from Xinjiang in 2019.

“Who makes your shoes in China? Do you even know? There are so many forced
labor factories in China,” Kanter said. “For instance, Uyghur forced labor. A
modern-day slavery. And it is happening right now in China …”

“Did you know that almost the entire apparel and footwear industry is tainted
by Uyghur forced labor? Many well-known global brands are implicated,” he
continued. “And yes, that includes one of the NBA’s biggest sponsors, Nike.
Nike claims that they do not allow any forced labor in their supply chains.
Yet, they don’t have the receipts to prove it. … Don’t forget, every time you
put those shoes on your feet, or you put that t-shirt on your back, there are
some many tears and so much oppression, and so much blood behind it all.”

In 2015, Nike and the NBA agreed to an 8-year apparel deal beginning with the
2017-2018 NBA season worth a reported $1 billion.

“This partnership with Nike represents a new paradigm in the structure of our
global merchandising business,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said at the
time. “As our exclusive oncourt apparel provider, Nike will be instrumental
in our collective efforts to grow the game globally while applying the latest
in technology to the design of our uniforms and oncourt products.”

Kanter ended the video by calling out Nike’s founder, along with LeBron James
and Michael Jordan.

“Nike likes to say ‘Just Do It.’ Well, what are you doing about the slave
labor that makes your shoes? That slave labor that makes you rich,” Kanter
said. “To the owner of Nike — Phil Knight — I have a message for you. How
about I book plane tickets for us, let’s fly to China together. We can try to
visit these slave labor camps and you can see with your own eyes. LeBron
James and Michael Jordan, you guys are welcome to come too. Nike must be a
participant in this. Stop the hypocrisy. Stop the modern-day slavery now.”

The reaction to Kanter’s initial video was swift, with Chinese streaming
service Tencent — which has partnered with the NBA — cutting the live feed of
the Celtics vs Knicks game. On Thursday, future Celtics games were marked as
unavailable to be live-streamed, according to The New York Times.

Let's go Brandon!

Reply all
Reply to author
0 new messages