Patterico's Pontifications

7/2/2019

Today’s Outrage: Nike Pulls Independence Day Shoes Featuring “Offensive” Betsy Ross Flag

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:51 am



[guest post by Dana]

To be clear: A woman who has been credited with sewing the first American flag is having a modern-day representation of her work pulled from the marketplace because a man complained that her work has connections to slavery, and thus he is offended. Girl still can’t catch a break in 2019…

nike

Nike has pulled a new Fourth of July shoe featuring Betsy Ross’ flag for the 13 American colonies reportedly after Colin Kaepernick expressed concerns, sparking outrage among some conservatives and prompting the Arizona governor to announce his state will pull millions of dollars in financial incentives to the company.

The shoe design drew concern from Kaepernick because the former NFL star said the early flag has connections to slavery, people familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal.

In recent years, the Betsy Ross flag has been appropriated by the white nationalist group Identity Evropa and the Ku Klux Klan, who use it to represent a time when slavery was legal in the United States.

A bit of detail on the plan between the state of Arizona and Nike, before the announcement of the shoes being pulled:

Nike plans to open a multimillion-dollar manufacturing plant on metro Phoenix’s west side after the Goodyear City Council unanimously signed off on an agreement Monday…

Within five years of opening, the deal with the city shows Nike will:

Have at least 505 full-time manufacturing jobs in Goodyear.
Have an average salary of $48,514 per year, including overtime and bonuses.
Pay at least 65% of employee health-care premiums.
Invest at least $184.5 million in improvements to an existing building in the city…

The city will agree to waive up to nearly $1 million in plan review and permit fees, and reimburse Nike another $1 million for the jobs created.

Goodyear estimates a Nike plant would bring in $7.7 million in direct revenue for the city. It puts overall economic impact at more than $483 million during the plant’s first five years.

Here is Gov. Ducey’s response (in part) after Nike’s announcement:

…Instead of celebrating American history the week of our nation’s independence, Nike has apparently decided that Betsy Ross is unworthy, and has bowed to the current onslaught of political correctness and historical revisionism. It is a shameful retreat for the company. American businesses should be proud of our country’s history, not abandoning it. Nike has made its decision, and now we’re making ours. I’ve ordered the Arizona Commerce Authority to withdraw all financial incentive dollars under their discretion that the State was providing for the company to locate here

Reportedly, because the shoes were already on retailer’s shelves when the announcement to send them back to Nike was made, there was a surge in demand as people realized they were now a limited edition and some pairs that weren’t sent back sold for more than $2,000. Just do it!

–Dana

29 Responses to “Today’s Outrage: Nike Pulls Independence Day Shoes Featuring “Offensive” Betsy Ross Flag”

  1. Good morning.

    Dana (bb0678)

  2. Still a cancer. His girlfriend destroyed his mind and people surrendering to his delusions are pathetic.

    NJRob (5d6579)

  3. I see a golden opportunity for a shoe company to make some money with their own design incorporating Betsy Ross flag. Better design made in America. Win-win!

    Dana (bb0678)

  4. American flags don’t belong on shoes. Not even flags from when America only had thirteen states. Nike should not have done it in the first place. But when hasn’t Nike sucked?

    nk (dbc370)

  5. 4: Nothing disrespectful about the Flag on shoes, coats, belts, whatever, as long as its not used disrespectfully (on heels for example). Its the people’s flag! Pathetic Nike: its one reason I buy New Balance.

    Harcourt Fenton Mudd (6b1442)

  6. Betsy Ross just got milkshaked.

    Munroe (75c371)

  7. In recent years, the Betsy Ross flag has been appropriated by the white nationalist group Identity Evropa and the Ku Klux Klan, who use it to represent a time when slavery was legal in the United States.

    Then the Phoenix Suns ought to change their name, and make sure they never have any logos showing a sun, because a sun was also on the flag of Imperial Japan..

    (It still is, or is again. Wikipedia says use of that flag was “severely restricted during the early years of the Allied occupation of Japan after World War II.”)

    Maybe Nike could compromise by removing 4 stars out of the 13 – for Virginia, North Carolina, south Carolina and Georgia. Maybe also Maryland and Delaware.

    Sammy Finkelman (0d0ca8)

  8. How about that I’m-for-limited-government crony capitalism, eh?

    Dana (bb0678)

  9. What a company:

    Nike has stopped selling some products in China after a fashion designer’s support for protests in Hong Kong sparked a social media backlash.

    The US retail giant said in a statement Thursday that it had decided to remove some of its goods “based on feedback from Chinese consumers.”

    “We have withdrawn from China a small number of products that were designed by a collaborator,” a Nike (NKE) spokesperson told CNN Business.

    Dana (bb0678)

  10. Once again, Dana and I write posts on the same topic! Great minds and all that. That is my fault for not first checking the drafts folder to see what she was working on.

    I have a slightly contrarian take on this issue, but I am going to wait until we’ve had a good discussion on this post and then post my thoughts sometime this afternoon.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  11. Heh, check the draft queue, JVW… Kamala Harris and busing….

    Dana (bb0678)

  12. I saw the suggestion somewhere that this is a First Amendment issue given that Gov. Ducey is financially penalizing Nike for their “speech” by revoking handout. I hadn’t considered that.

    Dana (bb0678)

  13. Heh, check the draft queue, JVW… Kamala Harris and busing….

    Ugh, I need to see if I can make that draft folder view the default page I land on when logging in. Otherwise I am far too senile to remember to check.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  14. Being ultra woke means you endorse a company running squalid quasi-slavery factories in East Asia, with zero manufacturing presence in sub-Saharan Africa, but get your back up about a Betsy Ross motif.

    Munroe (4a2909)

  15. It is fun to knee jerk when Colin K is involved, but the Betsy Ross flag has received the Pepe the Frog treatment by organized racists.

    From one Vincent Law on Alt-Right.com

    The Alt-Right must become the party of reason, the party of American Reaction to the subversion of our democracy and the voice of the disenfranchised White class. There is no need to resort to Nazi flags, the Betsy Ross flag will do just fine because the meaning is the same, America for the White man.

    The question is what do you do? Well, first thing is not to go into outrage hyperdrive. Those shoes sound like a great way for alt-rights to virtue signal each other, and that is something I am sure Nike doesn’t want to have happen to their product.

    Appalled (d07ae6)

  16. . . . Gov. Ducey is financially penalizing Nike for their “speech” by revoking handout. I hadn’t considered that.

    This would be a great time for the governor to declare that Arizona is a great state in which to do business, and that frankly the idea of cutting special tax deals to large companies is obnoxious, and that henceforth the Grand Canyon State will concentrate on making business conditions excellent for all companies who choose to incorporate in Arizona, not just the big boys who can throw their weight around.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  17. Being ultra woke means you endorse a company running squalid quasi-slavery factories in East Asia, with zero manufacturing presence in sub-Saharan Africa, but get your back up about a Betsy Ross motif.

    Nike does in fact manufacture one item of apparel in South Africa (I did this research for my post), but I don’t think that undermines the sentiment behind your post. Crybullies like Kaepernick would probably argue that it is totally OK to pay a low wage in countries that have a lower cost of living, but in the next breath he’ll tell us why it’s immoral for Barstow not to have the same minimum wage as San Francisco.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  18. Those shoes sound like a great way for alt-rights to virtue signal each other, and that is something I am sure Nike doesn’t want to have happen to their product.

    I see where you are coming from, but the reality is that if sensible conservatives allow the alt-right to co-opt the Betsy Ross flag, we’ll have no one to blame but ourselves. So the answer isn’t for the rest of us to stop displaying the Betsy Ross flag, it’s for us to embrace it as our own.

    But I also agree with nk that the flag is misused on clothing. The United States Flag Code covers this. One of my biggest pet peeves is seeing winning American athletes at the Olympics use the flag as a cape, which I think looks awful.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  19. So, a has been athlete, desperately afraid that his fifteen minutes of fame are up, concocts a new ‘controversy’ with the connivance of the company that has bet large on the value of his endorsement.

    *yawn*

    C. S. P. Schofield (f7316d)

  20. If El Salvador is truly desperate for a slam-bang manufacturing opportunity that also affirms a certain key demographic group in their country…THAT would truly be ironic

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  21. “Well, first thing is not to go into outrage hyperdrive.”
    Appalled (d07ae6) — 7/2/2019 @ 10:51 am

    The best counter to outrage hyperdrive is to not let the alt-right or left decide what symbols and anthems mean. Or, do you really think that when we give in there’s ever a stopping point? There’s always a next.

    Munroe (cecc7b)

  22. I would agree, Munroe, especially seeing that the Philadelphia 76ers historically have been my 2nd favorite NBA franchise and these shoes would have been such a no-brainer with an Embiid, Iverson, Barkley, or Julius Irving jersey.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  23. @4. That’s right! They belong on paper plates to have baked beans and potato salad scraped off ’em at the July 4 picnic– and on the paper napkins to wipe your mouth with. Ahhhh yes, the free market- it’s as American as apple pie a la mode!

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  24. Didnt the Black Crowes have an album cover…..

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  25. #21 —

    The Betsy Ross flag seems to have been obscure over the last 40 years, or so. I don’t feel like th Revolution gets taught, and the Constitution and the Founders don’t either. This is a terrible loss. We are getting to a dangerous spot where US History begins with the Civil Rights Act. Much of the reason classical liberalism gets no love, is that our founding gets no love form teachers in High School.

    Still, I don’t blame Nike or think they are being silly. As a company depending on fashion and fads, they have to be awre of the cultural zeitgeist.

    Appalled (d07ae6)

  26. an Iranian regime frontman, means the forever war isn’t over even when we stop fighting,

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2019/06/30/soros-and-koch-brothers-team-end-forever-war-policy/WhyENwjhG0vfo9Um6Zl0JO/story.html?event=event25

    so what aspect is offlimits because of this washed up ball player,

    narciso (d1f714)

  27. since the time of schoolhouse rock, now they have good morning America, for three hours, that’s no good to anyone,

    narciso (d1f714)

  28. OT – DCSCA might be collecting on a lot of wagers soon – http://www.politico.com/story/2019/07/02/mike-pence-travel-cancel-1395406

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  29. I would doubt that, his son is the point person for south florida,

    https://bigleaguepolitics.com/new-antifa-threatens-free-speech-rally-with-acid-attack-promises-to-blind-attendees/

    meanwhile back in Moscow, they seem to be replicating the Kursk, with the logarikm

    narciso (d1f714)


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