John Rich is not a fan of Nike picking Colin Kaepernick for a new ad campaign.
The singer from the county music duo Big and Rich took to Twitter to express his displeasure with the decision and his support for a conservative boycott of Nike after it announced that the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback would be the face of its “Just Do It” campaign.
As CNN Money noted, Nike took an unusually strong political stand by selecting Kaepernick, who has been out of the NFL since the 2016 season after he began taking a knee during the national anthem in protest of police brutality against minorities. Though Kaepernick had been in a sponsorship deal with Nike since 2011, the company’s decision to make him the face of the campaign appeared to show support for Kaepernick’s cause.
As Ray Ratto of NBC Sports noted, Nike’s decision shows that the company understands Kaepernick will not disappear from the national landscape even if he is no longer in the NFL.
“Nike’s new ad campaign, the one that includes Colin Kaepernick behind the legend ‘Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything,’ has had the desired effect of inflaming the open sores of the American body politic,” he wrote.
“It also means that the ex-49ers quarterback is winning the battle on the one field that Americans understand even more than football.”
Nike also went into the move likely knowing that it would anger many conservatives, and it has. Some of those upset with the decision are already calling for a boycott of the company. John Rich is among this group, as he posted a picture of his sound manager who cut the Nike logo off of his socks in protest.
Rich said the company should expect more boycotts to come.
It comes as little surprise that the Big and Rich singer would side against Nike. The singer has been a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump, who has called for NFL owners to fire players who protest during the national anthem.
When Trump had difficulty in booking acts for his 2017 inauguration, Big and Rich enthusiastically took the gig.
“We’re thrilled to be performing in our nation’s capital during this historic moment in time,” John Rich said in a statement (via Rolling Stone). “A presidential inauguration is a uniquely American event, so we are honored to be a part of it and hope to help make it a memorable event.”