On Monday, PBS played a Christiane Amanpour interview from CNN with Boston Celtics basketball star Enes Kanter over the controversy caused by his activism against China, which cuts against the usual “social justice warrior” vein. It’s worth watching to see his takedown of Nike as “one of the biggest hypocrite countries in the world.”
Amanpour read him Nike’s denials that they exploit slave labor in China, and he wasn’t having it. Studies show otherwise.
AMANPOUR: Why do you keep criticizing them if they’re — if that’s what their public — their response to that is?
KANTER: I will just say you this. Nike obviously is the one of the biggest — the biggest sponsor for NBA. And two years ago, right, when all this Black Lives Matter happened, Nike was one of the first company out there was standing with Black Lives Matter, Nike in America. Nike stands with stop Asian hate. Nike stands with LGBTQ community. Nike stands with Latino community.
But when it comes to China, Nike remains silent, because they — China is the big boss for Nike. And, I mean, obviously, they are not going to be able to answer because they know what they’re doing wrong. They’re one of the biggest hypocrite companies in the world.
AMANPOUR: But you’re not accusing them. You’re not accusing them in this case of profiting from slave labor or using any products from them? Because they deny it.
KANTER: Well, they — it’s a total lie. Everyone in the world knows that there are so many slave labor camps in — over there in China and many other countries that they are — that Nike is profiting from. So that was one of the biggest reason that I put on my shoes modern-day slavery and hypocrite Nike, just because of they’re profiting from slave labor camps.
Kanter then went after Nike athletes like Colin Kaepernick: “And it’s just disgusting to me see all the Nike athletes standing up for — and they are calling themselves a social justice warrior, and still can wear these items on their shoe, on their feet, or on their back, where, on these items, there is so much blood and sweat and oppression. And, to me, if you’re a Nike athlete, to me, you’re a hypocrite.”