Former San Fransisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is the centerpiece of a new advertising campaign by Nike celebrating the 30th anniversary of the company’s famous slogan “Just Do It.”
Kaepernick tweeted out the first image from the campaign on Monday.
It included the phrase, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) September 3, 2018
Kaepernick opted out of his NFL contract in early 2017.
He’s the original national anthem protester, a trend that continues to draw controversy with the league among fans due to continuing protests by players.
Kaepernick has insisted owners have collectively colluded to keep him out of the NFL due to his political activism. He even filed a grievance in an attempt to work his way back into the sport.
“They were clearly colluding because they were intimidated by the president. The only reason — and the owners will admit this — that they haven’t signed him is because of Trump, and they’ve colluded because of Trump,” Kaepernick’s lawyer, Mark Geragos, told “The Straight Aim with Amy Dash” podcast this summer.
Nike has stuck with the athlete through controversial times, and it’s not hard to see its new advertising campaign as a political statement. The slogan plastered across the athlete’s face seems to speak directly to his inability to get a job in the NFL these days.
However, as the New York Post reported, shares of Nike fell 3 percent on Tuesday “as calls for a boycott of the sportswear giant gained traction on social media,” after the choice of Colin Kaepernick as the face of the company’s 30th anniversary of its campaign.
What is rather humorous about it is that Kaepernick has not lost everything — not even close. Since his departure from the NFL, leftists have made him a hero.
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GQ named him “Citizen of the Year” in 2017.
“A Wrinkle in Time” director Ava Duvernay announced she was working on a television series based on his life.
He received the National Education Association’s President’s Award.
He also received a reportedly $1 million book deal.
So what did he lose again?
With the NFL season ready to kick off into high gear, it will be interesting to see how many players try to follow in Kaepernick’s footsteps, as his whole political activism thing seems to be paying off quite nicely.
That said, the former quarterback still rubs many fans the wrong way, and his new advertising campaign is no different.
Some have been going so far as to burn their Nike products in protest against the new advertisement.
First the @NFL forces me to choose between my favorite sport and my country. I chose country. Then @Nike forces me to choose between my favorite shoes and my country. Since when did the American Flag and the National Anthem become offensive? pic.twitter.com/4CVQdTHUH4
— Sean Clancy (@sclancy79) September 3, 2018
Country singer John Rich revealed through Twitter that his soundman, a former Marine, cut the swoosh off his Nike socks in protest.
— John Rich (@johnrich) September 3, 2018
The organization Vote Vets has been encouraging protesters to donate their Nike clothing to homeless veterans rather than burning it.
So instead of burning it, or cutting it, please donate it. Lots of houseless people could use it, sadly including many veterans on the streets.
— VoteVets (@votevets) September 4, 2018
For more on Kaepernick’s controversial new gig, check out the video below — and tell us what you think about all of this in the comments section below: