Nike pulls shoe, courts controversy

Business

Shoemaker Nike yanked a new sneaker just before it hit store shelves, and now could lose millions of dollars in financial incentives.

The “Air Max One Quick Strike 4th of July” is already in the hands of retailers, but Nike has asked for them all back.

The “Wall Street Journal” reports that decision was made after former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick complained about the design.

The shoe features an early version of the American flag showing 13 stars in a circle to represent the original 13 colonies.

Betsy Ross designed that famous flag during the American Revolution, and according to The Smithsonian, it was used as the country’s official banner from 1777 to 17-95.

Kaepernick reportedly says it harkens back to a time of slavery.

The former 49er started the movement among professional athletes to kneel during the National Anthem to protest racial equality.

Arizona Republican Governor Doug Ducey blasted the news, calling it disappointing and saying he is embarrassed for Nike. In a tweet thread, he ordered the Arizona Commerce Authority to withdraw all financial incentive dollars promised to the company to locate in the state.

Those incentives were expected to be worth close to $2 million. So far, Nike has not responded to the governor.

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