Sneakerheads: the seductive appeal of Jordans

quaylin jordans

opinion piece

by Janaya Andrews

What’s the deal with Jordan shoes: these sneakers are taking over the world and  people will do anything to get them, even if  it  means selling them for money to get a new pair or stealing them when there are other shoes. Lots of other shoes.

You mostly see these shoes more than you see other shoes on people’s feet.

Why this obsession? There are sneakerheads and people are flipping AirJordans and  Foamposites at Sneaker Conventions. You must be kidding? Sneaker conventions?

I guess if they don’t have their designer sneakers,  then they  don’t  feel like they belong. Sad state of affairs, when your friends judge you on the brand of sneakers you wear.

Even sadder that people get shot waiting on line to buy those $1,500 Paranorman Foamposites or $185 AirJordan V Bel Airs. In Wilmington, Delaware and in  Las Vegas, guys camped out to wait for their release, only to be shot.

It doesn’t make you original, only an OG. You are just following  in someone’s footsteps just because you want to be popular or just fit in.

Teens say that they  buy Jordans because “they  look  nice  and  they’re popular,” in the words of freshman Quaylin Wesley.  “They’re expensive and the  main topic to talk about  in  school,” he added.

In West Oakland (and East), they add status. “It says something about how brave you are, how much clout you have, how much nerve you have,”says Yale sociologist Elijah Anderson about the street value of shoes.

But much of the real value is to Nike, and other big brands profiting from the sales of these shoes, turning athletic shoe market into a $21 billion a year industry.  New sneakers may sell for up to  $270 for a pair, all because Michael Jordan and other basketball stars put their name and logo on the shoes. 

Just DON’T do it. Just be you .

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