To Whom It May Concern:
It has come to our attention that there have been multiple news articles and stories, making reference to “sneakerheads”, “sneaker enthusiasts”, and the “sneaker community” in a negative light that does not accurately portray our collectively held values and culture as a whole.
It disgusts and appalls all of us at Nice Kicks, among others within the sneaker community, that a few select individuals resorted to violence for the goal of obtaining a pair of shoes. In recent months the Concord Jordan 11s and of course most recently, the Nike Air Foamposite One “Galaxy” drew this attention to our community.
While Nice Kicks recognizes that the incidents that took place at the Florida Mall in Orlando, FL and a couple of other locations last Friday were not positive events, we formally condemn the stereotyping and generalizing that all persons present were sneakerheads or that these activities are in any way normal for the sneaker community.
Sneakerheads make large sacrifices each day for shoes, but neither the community, nor Nice Kicks condones any individual committing a crime or harming a fellow human being for a pair of shoes. We ask that the media understand and distinguish the difference between a consumer of shoes and a sneakerhead or member of the sneaker community before labeling and generalizing.
We would like to invite the media to visit one of our many community events that take place each year where sneakerheads travel far distances and make large sacrifices to comes together to spend time interacting one another, meeting new people with similar interests, and celebrating what makes our diverse community unique.
Campouts are nothing new to our community. Lineups are nothing new to our community. Big releases are nothing new to our community. But unfortunately something that is new, is the unified and direct negative light and connotation cast over the entire subculture and not the towards the select individuals committing those actions.
The sensationalistic images and video clips of crowds running from malls, the flashing lights of police cruisers, and officers in riot gear were chosen images to broadcast to the public of what events transpired, but we have yet to find one media outlet that has called into question local police and mall security for their processes and procedures for dealing with large crowds and big releases. We know what occurred and what unfortunate instances they are, but we are yet to see any outlet call into question the planning by those responsible for public safety.
We appreciate the media’s dedication to keeping all of us informed of what is happening in our world, but we ask that you use caution when generalizing crowds of people to all be members of a community.
If any writers or reporters from the media would like further clarification or statements about last week’s events, please contact our offices by email at email@example.com. If any police departments or malls would like to speak with us about our procedures for handling crowds, campouts, lineups, and releases, please contact our offices at the aforementioned email.