OPINION: Colin Kaepernick Campaign

//PAIGE GERLING//

As a generation constantly plugged into our technology, we are also constantly aware of the events going on in the world around us. This week, one name has been floating around across the media.

That name is Colin Kaepernick.

After two years with only the occasional media buzz surrounding him, Kaepernick announced his partnership with Nike, a popular company that sells athletic apparel. This announcement thrusted Nike onto the main stage of mainstream media.

Even as somebody who could care less about the brands of clothing I wear, I was surprised nonetheless when I heard Kaepernick partnered with Nike under the phrase: “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.”

While I could care less about the brands on my clothing, you will usually see me glued to the television during a football game. Therefore, I have heard a plethora of opinions on Colin Kaepernick, all sparking around his decision to kneel during the national anthem in the 2016 NFL Preseason to protest racial injustice.

Some people have strongly praised Nike for featuring Kaepernick as a spokesperson, while others have gone as far as burning their Nike shoes and other Nike apparel in response to this decision.

However, I believe that the decision to make Kaepernick a spokesperson was  well marketed move on Nike’s part. Considering Kaepernick’s prominence among the media, it makes perfect sense for him to be a face of their company.

Especially as tension over the NFL’s national anthem policies mounts, the time for this announcement could not have come at a more impactful time.

Not only is it a smart move for Nike, but for Kaepernick as well. I think it is a good thing that Kaepernick has another large platform to promote his message, regardless of who believes in his opinon.

While Kaepernick has come under fire for kneeling during the national anthem before NFL games, he is exercising his freedoms as a American citizen. Besides, if we all have the same opinions, there is no reason to have these freedoms in place.

I truly think that Kaepernick means no disrespect to our country’s veterans who have fought and died for our rights. He has not taken to violence to spread his word, nor was his protest of kneeling meant as a sign of dishonor towards our veterans.

Although Kaepernick’s partnership with Nike is controversial, I believe that it will be for the better. I hope that people become more open-minded when dealing with sensitive topics, and consider both sides in order to make informed judgements.

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