1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

LeBron James and Darfur

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Double Down, May 25, 2007.

  1. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    (The Christian Science Monitor, by way of The Big Lead)

    Fair or unfair?


  2. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    I got an e-mail earlier today from pokerstars.com, saying that they will have a tournament, $10 buy-in, where the proceeds will benefit a Darfur charitable group.
    If the gamblers are behind it, then I don't see why James couldn't have signed a letter.
    It becomes a non-story if the entire team had signed it.
  3. Pastor

    Pastor Active Member

    James seems to be imitating Michael Jordan in this regard. It is certainly possible that James isn't aware of the issues regarding Darfur and would like more information, but it just seems to be a bit precarious.

    James has a lot at stake in China. The guy is featured in commercials for Nike on television. There is a monster billboard with him on it in what would be Times Square in Shanghai.

    As we are all aware, the Chinese government runs the Chinese media. If James were to frustrate the government I wouldn't be surprised if their news became a means for negative PR for him.
  4. heyabbott

    heyabbott Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure why anyone would care what Lebron James thinks about the Chinese responsiblity for the holocaust in Darfur.
  5. Just_An_SID

    Just_An_SID Active Member

    But in this #*@%ed-up world that we live in, people do actually care what I guy known for putting a big orange ball into a hoop thinks. It doesn't make any sense but it is reality.
  6. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    Well, normally you'd be right, but I think it is a fair point to ask whether LeBron is protecting Nike's business interests in the world's largest market, putting dollars ahead of genocide.
  7. spnited

    spnited Active Member

    I still don't think the average fan cares -- or even knows -- about this.
    What makes you think LeBron even knows where or what Darfur is?
  8. heyabbott

    heyabbott Well-Known Member

    If that's the case, then the question should be asked of Hillary Clinton, former member of the Board of Directors of Wal-Mart, US Senator and candidate for President, rather than some high school graduate who wears a tank top and sneakers to work 3 days a week.
  9. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    Which is why it ran in the Christian Science Monitor, not the Plain Dealer.

    LeBron's grasph of geography is sort of irrelevant, don't you think? If Nike makes billions of dollars selling shoes, clothes, golf clubs, etc., in China, and the government will no longer allow them to sell those things in China if their most famous spokesman is even mildly critical of the government's policies, isn't it fair to at least point out the potential conflict here?

    I'm fairly certain LeBron doesn't know a whole lot about China's involvement in the Sudan. And he has every right to say he doesn't have enough information about the situation to sign his name to a petition. But as a businessman, "a global brand" in his own words, doesn't he have some moral responsibility to get informed on the people he's getting in bed with?
  10. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    I was unaware that asking LeBron about the issue meant no one could ask Hillary Clinton the same thing. Is it like a game show where you ask the question once, and then lose your turn?
  11. heyabbott

    heyabbott Well-Known Member

    I guess it goes back to my original point, who gives a shit what James thinks about geo-eco-political events? In the scheme of things, he's nothing. The significant questions need to be asked of the leadership of Nike whose plants are in China, of Wal-Mart one of China's biggest customers and folks like Sen Clinton, who work both sides of the issue, as a Director of Wal-Mart when China was just beginning to be used as a supplier of cheap goods and as a 2 term US senator.

    James plays ball and he's having enough trouble comprehending the Pistons defense, let alone genocide and economies of scale.
  12. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    So, once again, why can't the question be asked of both? In attempting to create a "global brand" for himself, your contention is that LeBron's only responsibility is to figure out how to beat the Pistons' Box-In-One? All that global politics stuff is up to, to paraphrase Toby Ziegler, his "money people?"

    Frankly I don't give a damn what Reggie Bush thinks about Darfur, or even if he knows how to spell it. But LeBron has business interests in China, which is funding genocide. As a responsible human being, college education or no, he owes it to himself to at least decide if he's ok with that arrangement. If he is, that's fine. I own Nike products too. But saying "who cares, ask Hillary Clinton this question" is silly. Ask em both. And as far as I know, Hillary Clinton isn't trying to create a global brand for herself. At least not yet. Would it be ok if LeBron's face was plastered on billboards all over downtown Tehran?
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page