Entertainment

Nike Ripped Apart by Trump and Others for Kaepernick Ad

'There's no reason for it,' said the president — people are showing the late Pat Tillman as a real example of 'sacrifice'

Image Credit: Shutterstock

The decision by the Nike company to make former San Francisco 49ers quarterback the center of its new advertising campaign is causing enormous controversy.

The first image from the campaign included the words “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

The phrase seems to be referring to Colin Kaepernick’s departure from the NFL early last year — and his claims that his political activism is keeping him from getting back into the sports league.

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Kaepernick is not really all that well known for his athletic accomplishments; he is more known for being the person who started the national anthem protests in the NFL.

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He claimed when they started that the move was to protest police brutality against minorities. He also did distracting things like wear socks that suggested America’s police were pigs.

Implying that he “sacrificed” anything has led to outrage and parody online.

Kaepernick, since leaving the NFL, has received several media awards and a $1 million book deal — and a television show about his life is in development.

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Among the critics of Kaepernick’s new ad is President Donald Trump.

In a Tuesday interview with the Daily Caller, the president said there’s “no reason” for Nike to use the former quarterback in its ads.

“I think it’s a terrible message that they’re sending and the purpose of them doing it — maybe there’s a reason for them doing it,” Trump said. “But I think as far as sending a message, I think it’s a terrible message and a message that shouldn’t be sent. There’s no reason for it.”

Outspoken conservative and actor James Woods called out Nike on Twitter for its controversial ties to sweatshops.

Woods also called for a boycott of the company by using the hashtag “#dumpnike.”

Many have also called out Nike for saying Kaepernick has sacrificed anything, especially since the NFL was also home to the late Pat Tillman, a professional football player who left his contract with the league in order to join the armed forces.

Tillman joined in 2002 and ended up a member of the Army Rangers.

He served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He was killed in the line of duty in 2004.

Other reactions have been a bit more humorous.

Humorous or not, these are likely not the responses Nike expected when it put together this campaign — which is reportedly meant to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the “just do it” slogan.

All of this shows that the company should have put a lot more thought into not only the person it put at the center of this campaign, but also the language it chose to celebrate him and the brand.

Why, you may say? This one tweet may say it all:

For more on the new campaign featuring Kaepernick, check out the video below:

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