WARNER TODD HUSTON Boston Celtics star Enes Kanter continues to press sportswear giant Nike to stop employing Chinese slave labor in another video posted to social media on Monday.
Addressing the video to “Dear Nike,” Kanter slams the sportswear company for using Chinese labor camp slaves to make some of its products.
“Your company says that you are making a positive impact on our community,” Kanter says in his latest video. However, the NBA center says that while it may be true that Nike works to raise awareness of injustice in America, it is silent when it comes to injustice elsewhere.
“But when it comes to China,” Kanter noted damningly, “Nike remains silent.”
— Enes Kanter (@EnesKanter) October 25, 2021
“You do not protest police brutality in China,” Kanter told his fans. “You do not speak about discrimination against the LGBTQ community, you do not say a word about the oppression of minorities in China. You have still to speak up.”
Kanter went on to speak of all the forced labor factories in China, calling it “modern-day slavery, and it’s happening right now in China.”
Speaking of the millions of Muslim Uyghur imprisoned and forced to labor in Chinese camps, Kanter pointed out that they are “subject to political reeducation.” He added, “they have no freedom of expression, no freedom of religion,” and no freedom of movement in China.
“Did you know,” he asks viewers, “that the entire apparel and footwear industry is tainted by Uyghur forced labor? Many well-known global brands are implicated, and, yes, that includes one of the NBA’s biggest sponsors, Nike.”
Kanter adds that Nike claims it has eliminated forced labor from its supply chain, “yet they don’t have the [records] to prove it,” Kanter said. He continued to point out that Nike has refused to cut ties with China and has not given the public any timelines or plans to do so.
“Don’t forget, every time you put those shoes on your feet, or you put that t-shirt on your back, there are so many tears, and so much oppression, and so much blood behind it all,” he told his fans.
“What are you doing about that slave labor that makes you rich?” he asked Nike.
Kanter closed with a message to the owner of Nike, Phil Knight: “How about I book our plane tickets for us. Let’s fly to China together. We can try to visit these slave labor camps,” Kanter said before extending the invite to LeBron James and Michael Jordan.
“Stop the hypocrisy,” he said to Nike as he ended his video. “Stop the modern-day slavery now!”
The NBA star seems to be the lone voice in the league demanding that China stop its cruel practices.
Kanter also recently posted several shoe designs aimed at spreading the word of the Chinese-sponsored genocide:
The 29-year-old player also blasted China’s Brutal dictator” in a video last Wednesday, and the next day slammed the world’s top Muslim leaders for turning a blind eye to China’s enslavement of the Muslim Uyghur population.
Kanter has also been a stalwart opponent of the dictator who runs his naive Turkey, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. As a result, broadcast companies in Turkey have often refused to air NBA games when Kanter’s team is playing. In addition, the Erdogan regime has issued at least nine arrest warrants against the player on charges of “insulting the president,” a crime in Turkey.
Kanter also routinely faces death threats from Turkish nationalists, which NBA Commissioner Adam Silver vowed the league would take “very seriously” in 2019.
Despite Nike’s claims that it abhors the slave labor camps in China, the company was also part of a group of multi-national companies seeking to weaken U.S. laws that try to punish China for employing slave labor.
Yet even as it deployed its billion-dollar lobbying effort to weaken laws meant to end slave labor, Nike CEO John Donahoe spoke out of the other side of his corporate mouth by admitting Nike hasn’t been “more vocal” in the fight against China’s vast human rights depredations — and it’s all because China is a customer for its products.