Colin Kaepernick might not be tossing touchdowns or escaping tackles in the NFL this season, and might never again, but that’s not stopping him from cashing checks from one of the world’s most iconic brands. There’s no protest that can stop that, either.
Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback turned activist and undisputed leader of the highly debated national anthem protests in football, is now one of the faces of Nike’s 30th anniversary “Just Do It” campaign, and it is both widely well-received and controversial as you would expect.
A Twitter post from Kaepernick reading “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything. #JustDoIt” has created quite a ruckus on social media.
Over 280,000-plus retweets and another 680,000-plus likes is about as viral as something gets these days.
Kaepernick, who has been sponsored by Nike since 2011, has reportedly renegotiated a new deal the the athletic giant that will include a signature shoe and apparel.
For everyone who praised the advertisement decision, there was someone quick to despise it, and vice versa. It’s the ultimate tug-of-war match between those who feel the protests against social injustice are a constitutional right and many others who believe it is disrespecting the American flag, country, and military.
Here are some of the mixed reactions:
Since the announcement, #NikeBoycott has become a trending topic on Twitter, people burned shoes, and Nike’s stock went down over 3 percent on Tuesday alone.
The first two definitely are a direct correlation, but the last one might not be. Nike’s stock definitely dipped, but is that just a bad day or a start to a new trend? The company is currently in the middle of a massive growth year.
Only time will tell what comes from this, if it will be positive or negative for Nike, but one thing is clear here: Colin Kaepernick might not be playing in the NFL right now, but he isn’t going anywhere.