LeBron James: ‘Shoes Made By Some Kid In China’
LeBron James is one of the best basketball players in the world, if not of all time. He is not, however, much of a social media guru. Below is a screenshot of his Facebook page, in which James phrases his appreciation for a fan in China customizing a pair of shoes for James in an incredibly unfortunate way.
Obviously James didn’t mean to make it sound as if those shoes were the product of sweatshop labor. However, when you say that a kid in China made a pair of Nike shoes without any further explanation, the rest of the world tends to remember that many of Nike’s products are made in China, often as a result of dubious labor practices.
Just look at the comment on the photo, immediately focusing on Nike’s outsourcing of labor rather than what appears to be just a nice gesture by a fan of LeBron James. I have a feeling that particular Facebook user isn’t the only one who will react that way.
The unfortunate post comes on the heels of the announcement that Nike will be releasing the new LeBron James X shoes later in the year for the ludicrous price of $315, further enraging those that are unhappy with Nike’s outsourcing of labor to cut manufacturing costs to sell products at a huge markup.
Being able to connect with athletes through social media is a great thing for sports fans. Sometimes athletes reward us with an unintentional nod to sweatshop labor. Given how willing basketball fans are to hate on LeBron, he can expect a huge backlash for this mistake.