Colin Kaepernick is named Nike’s newest face to the 30th Anniversary “Just Do It” campaign. This collaboration between Nike and Kaepernick has ignited an outcry of emotions nationwide leaving former NFL San Francisco 49er’s quarterback gracing the news media screens and becoming a trending topic yet once again. Kaepernick has been accused for being non patriotic and completely disrespectful not only to his nation but to the United States Armed Forces. Kaepernick who has been seemingly black balled by the NFL Association since 2016 for taking the term “stand up for something or fall for anything” in the most literal way imaginable. Kaepernick was forced to answer a question most Americans of color also was forced to answer. Does one choose to ignore the injustice of cold blooded executions on people of color who look very similar to the mirrors reflection for no valid cause? Injustice that is without reprimand and what seems without pause freely running rampant by the hands of police officers who swore to protect and serve? The answer has yet to be swayed. There was a clear division between standing with Kaepernick against injustice and being seen as loyal to one’s nation. In September 2016 Kaepernick decided that using his platform and exercising his First Amendment rights to bring awareness to the masses regarding police brutality on black and brown people was his right and he would practice them peacefully. Well, it took no time for the people of America to begin a movement of their own that was by far not quiet nor peaceful. It was almost immediate backlash for starting a peaceful protest by choosing to kneel during the national anthem that gained momentum throughout the league.
Starting late 2016 Kaepernick as stated before has been black balled by the NFL not having stepped one foot on a field to play in almost 2 years. In addition, losing potential endorsement deals with major companies and having being called a disrespectful SOB by the President of the United States, it seems no one wanted to touch Kaepernick. All except one daring company who has decided to take a stand with Kaepernick despite the negative noise and opinions. Nike has been built on inspiration and innovation since day 1 so it’s no surprise of this daring and bold move with the former NFL player. Although after the announcement was made self proclaimed “former Nike wearers” took scissors and lighters to their already purchased merchandise denouncing the company for it’s collaboration with Kaepernick. Most likely these are the same households who feel that kneeling during the national anthem is disrespectful to the Armed Forces. After making such a huge ordeal about the insensitivity surrounding veterans Nike clothes, shoes, and socks are being destroyed by the very people who made it a point to “think about the veterans”. It is some of those same veterans who are in need of the very things being destroyed in protest.
Nike taking a stance along side Kaepernick is pure perfection. It just may cause a few individuals to withdraw from the company completely with their financial support but it has without a doubt started a outpouring of the black dollar in support of the collab. It is often forgotten that collectively the black dollar holds a tremendous amount of weight so as Nike shares currently take a slight dip in numbers there is no question that is only for a brief time. People of color has stood and will continue to stand with Colin Kaepernick, and with a company like Nike standing in unison as well it gives you the reassurance that standing up for what you believe in is always worth it in the end! #JUSTDOIT