You just knew there was going to be trouble.
When Nike unveiled its new Colin Kaepernick ad, it was always going to be a highly divisive and polarizing move.
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) September 3, 2018
“Believe in something. Even it means sacrificing everything,” the ad text urges in text superimposed on Kaepernick’s picture.
Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, made all sorts of headlines two years ago when he began kneeling to protest during the national anthem.
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Kaepernick said in August 2016, trying to explain his actions, according to NFL.com.
“To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”
Kaepernick also angered quite a few people when he wore socks depicting police officers as pigs and a T-shirt promoting Cuban dictator Fidel Castro.
A hearty “Bronx cheer” for your selection of Colin Kaepernick as the face of the 30th Anniversary of your iconic “Just Do It” campaign.
Will his new Fall line include these sock *beauties*?
Be advised. Cops buy sneakers too …
Respectfully, Law Enforcement pic.twitter.com/6LNX0QenRf
— James A. Gagliano (@JamesAGagliano) September 3, 2018
In short, it was a dubious move, at best, for the apparel titan to get behind Kaepernick and his brand of messaging.
To the surprise of absolutely nobody, Nike’s move has set off a wave of anger from current and potential customers.
Some people used the tried and true “burn it all down” method.
First the @NFL forces me to choose between my favorite sport and my country. I chose country. Then @Nike forces me to choose between my favorite shoes and my country. Since when did the American Flag and the National Anthem become offensive? pic.twitter.com/4CVQdTHUH4
— Sean Clancy (@sclancy79) September 3, 2018
Others have started #BoycottNike.
— Wayne Jones (@waynebjones123) September 3, 2018
Even some celebrities, such as musician John Rich, half of Big and Rich, took to Twitter to voice his displeasure with Nike’s move.
— John Rich (@johnrich) September 3, 2018
But it’s not just Twitter outrage that should have Nike second-guessing its business decision.
Nike stock has opened down over $2 in premarket trading in wake of Colin Kaepernick endorsement deal. That means the decision to sign Kaepernick has already cost Nike $3 billion in market cap. $3 billion!
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) September 4, 2018
That’s a lot of money to lose overnight — an in fact, when all was said and done by market close on Tuesday, the company’s market cap had dropped by almost $4.2 billion. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that Nike stock dropped after such a polarizing move, but the degree to which it took a nosedive is still unexpected.
But Nike executives have made their bed. They now have no choice but to lie in it.
This move also exemplifies just how out of touch some of these elite conglomerates are with Middle America. In what universe did Nike think that entering a deal with Kaepernick was an even remotely good idea?
Are billions of dollars really worth the chance to push a far-left narrative that vilifies the hard-working men and women who keep our communities and countries safe?
You’d think that a massive corporation like Nike would make smarter, more apolitical decisions when it comes to marketing.
You’d be wrong. Just like Nike.
This article was edited Wednesday afternoon for clarity and to specify the actual amount of market cap impact Nike had suffered by market close on Tuesday.
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