Nike released its Air Force 1 ’07 x Colin Kaepernick shoe on Monday, featuring a celebration of the first time Kaepernick began protesting during the national anthem. The shoe was an early Christmas gift to the sportswear giant and sold out in less than two hours.
The low sneaker features a black body with white highlights and includes a gradient swoosh on the sides. The uppers are complete with a stylized image of Kaepernick on the heel plate. But most pointedly, on the bottom of the right foot is imprinted the numbers 081416, representing the August 14 date that Kaepernick first began protesting during the anthem in 2016.
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) December 23, 2019
That August day was the very first time Kaepernick turned the playing of the national anthem into an opportunity to tell the world that all police are racists, and he thinks the United States is a bad place for minorities. On that date, ahead of a preseason game against the Houston Texans, the San Francisco 49ers second-string quarterback remained seated and refused to stand at attention when the national anthem began.
“As a football star with the ability to articulate a powerful message, Kaepernick is one of this generation’s most prominent crossover cultural influencers,” Nike said of its Kaepernick protest shoe.
The shoe offer did not last long and sold out in less than two hours, Yahoo Sports reported. Nike, though, did not report how many units were manufactured in the first place.
Kaepernick signed on with Nike in 2018 a year after he walked away from his contract with the San Francisco 49ers and went free agent. After not signing on with another team, Kaepernick filed a grievance claiming that the league and owners “colluded” to keep him from continuing his football career. He settled out of court for an undisclosed amount.
Most recently, Kaepernick snubbed a league sponsored workout organized to let the teams and their representatives review his playing condition. Kaepernick bailed on the event at the last minute and held his own workout at a local Atlanta high school. True to his penchant for protesting, during his workout, Kaepernick wore a t-shirt with the name of the fictional slave “Kunta Kinte” on it.
No team has expressed interest in signing him despite the workout.
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