Nike or New Balance? And Why?
Oh, hello out there in internet, social media world! It's me, The Political Chicken! There's been lots going on lately, but I haven't forgotten about you! From Kaepernick and Nike to now New Balance and President Trump, there's always something brewing.
Colin Kaepernick. His name has become synonymous with protest of the National Anthem sung before National Football League (NFL) football games. He took a knee during the playing and singing of the National Anthem beginning last football season. Has it really been two years since he started that? I have by and large stayed out of it, and I really wasn't even going to 'go there', but here I go.
There has been a whirlwind of controversy ever since he decided to protest the National Anthem. Many regular football fans have decided to boycott the NFL because of Kaepernick's decision to sit out during the National Anthem. It has incited rage in some. He's been called a myriad of names because of the protest. Thing is, guys, IT'S ACTUALLY HIS RIGHT TO SIT IT OUT.
The NFL even supported his decision by saying that, "Players are encouraged but not required to stand during the playing of the national anthem." Alrighty. It's also YOUR RIGHT to not watch football because of the stance of the NFL. Since then, Nike has come out as making Kaepernick their spokesperson. Conservatives lost their collective minds; burning their Nike shoes in the streets, y'all. People went post apocalyptic. SRSLY.
Now comes New Balance, not to be outdone by Nike, I guess, throwing their support behind President Trump. The VP of Public Affairs, Sara Germano, tweeted last night that, "The Obama administration turned a deaf ear to us, and frankly w/President-Elect Trump we feel things are going to move in the right direction." This is from a Forbe's magazine article published this morning. And I know what my conservative peeps are all thinking: support New Balance because they support our president! Not so fast, friends.
The article goes on to say that, "For what it’s worth, New Balance would likely have backed rival candidate Hillary Clinton, too, who reversed her stance on TPP after endorsing it three years ago as President Obama’s Secretary of State. On the campaign trail she, like Trump, opposed the deal, but her so-called flip-flop made some voters nervous that she’d change her position yet again if she made it to the White House."
As they used to say on Sesame Street, "One of these things is not like the other." Okay, so what's the difference? One could say that Nike put their support behind Kaepernick for a publicity stunt. Love or hate, it worked. I mean, have you SEEN all of the anti-Nike memes out there? Free advertising, hello! So will we now see liberals burning their New Balance shoes in the streets?
One could also say that New Balance's decision was based on a business decision as to what was good for the company. Which one of these reasons will cause my conservative friends to support which company more and why? Will we continue down the road of emotions and knee jerks, or will we have a more steady hand going forward? Remember, "Feelings are much like waves, we can't stop them from coming but we can choose which one to surf."