By Ishaan Bhattacharya
Welcome back to the Giannini Politics Update! Today we’ll be discussing one current event. We will talk about the criticism over Nike’s inclusion of Colin Kaepernick, a controversial NFL player, in a new ad campaign.
Recently a new ad campaign for Nike, a company worth over $90 billion, sparked controversy for including a contentious football player, Colin Kaepernick. Kaepernick has not played in an NFL game in over a year, but has attracted attention to himself for kneeling during the national anthem in multiple NFL games when he was a player. Nike announced that Kaepernick is one of the athletes helping memorialize the 30th anniversary of the brand’s iconic slogan: “Just do it”. The ad features a black-and-white close-up of Kaepernick’s face with the words, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything” — a reference to Kaepernick’s lawsuit against the NFL for purportedly conniving to keep the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback out of the league over his protests against police brutality. As a reaction to Nike’s ad campaign, people are destroying their Nike apparel and declaring a boycott over already purchased attire — all in the name of castigating Kaepernick, the newest face of Nike’s “Just Do It” campaign.
Unsurprisingly, this boycott has attracted the attention of our president Donald J. Trump, who recently tweeted a reaction to this issue saying, “Just like the NFL, whose ratings have gone WAY DOWN, Nike is getting absolutely killed with anger and boycotts. I wonder if they had any idea that it would be this way? As far as the NFL is concerned, I just find it hard to watch, and always will, until they stand for the FLAG!” This may be a contributing factor to the fact that shares of Nike (NKE) fell nearly 3% recently.
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