Former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick (pictured) is not calling shots in the huddle anymore. But he is definitely still calling them in the boardroom.
According to Yahoo Sports, the 31-year-old Nike pitch man made a judgement call, which caused the athletic apparel giant to reverse course. Apparently, Nike was just in the process of releasing a special Fourth of July edition version of its Air Max Ones.
On the heel of this determinate version of Nike’s popular sneaker line, an emblem of the Betsy Ross version of the American flag is stitched on. The 13 stars symbolize the original American colonies, which fought for their independence from Britain in the 1770s.
This was probably an ill-advised design campaign for Nike to go with for a variety of reasons. For one, hate-preaching white nationalist groups, such as the Patriot Movement and Identity Evropa have used Ross’ colonial era flag as a token of symbolism.
Kaepernick got wind of the new Air Max 1 designs after seeing them online recently. The former NFC Champion was not impressed. He led the charge in a campaign, which ultimately persuaded Nike to do some major damage control.
The former San Francisco 49ers star said he found the flag to be offensive. Kaepernick thought the flag’s design was reminiscent of America’s ugly, yet indelible history of slavery. Nike then began to move frenetically in its swift efforts to pull the shoe from stores.
“Nike has chosen not to release the Air Max 1 Quick Strike Fourth of July as it featured an old version of the American flag,” said Nike spokesman Mark Rhodes in a Monday (July 1) statement.
The seething, racially-motivated anger in America today has created a Jim Crow-style divisive nature. In hindsight, Kaepernick’s prodding of Nike to make such a call definitely prevented some fresh undue controversy along racial lines.
After living through white America’s public Nike apparel burning campaign, which ensued when Kaepernick was first signed on by the company, its safe to say that the nation’s lovers of racial harmony have seen enough.