UPDATED: LeBron James Jersey Donation Derailed by "Politics"
|Flickr user: Keith Allison|
|We don't want your stinking jerseys.|
In July, a group of guys in Northeast Ohio launched a campaign to collect LeBron James' old Cleveland Cavaliers jerseys and send them to homeless people in Miami. It seemed like a wholesome idea. Clevelanders were so pissed off at the King's betrayal of his hometown to join the Heat, they were burning formerly treasured polyester heirlooms in the streets. Why not turn that anger into charity?
There was just one tiny problem. Homeless advocates
in Miami didn't want tainted goods.
"It's on hold right now," says Rita Clark of the Miami Coalition for the Homeless. "There's a lot of politics around this."
The coalition had been in talks with the Cleveland do-gooders but ran into some resistance here in South Florida. Apparently, a marketing plan based on the concept of Here -- take a bunch of stuff we hate! wasn't particularly appealing. Clark says she heard that Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado was opposed to the donation plan.
"It seemed very well-intentioned, but it's not gonna happen right away," Clark says. "I'm trying to help them be better-received here in Miami."
UPDATE: The mayor's spokesman, Pat Santangelo, called this morning to say that Regalado is not against the plan, and never spoke to anyone about it. "We don't care," Santangelo says. "We've got bigger fish to fry."
In fact, Santangelo added that Regalado plans to donate 300 of his spare campaign shirts to the homeless.
Chris Jungjohann, one of the organizers of the donation drive in Cleveland, didn't respond to a request for comment.
His group's Facebook page, Break Up With LeBron, last posted an update on August 3. It's been silent ever since.