Nike shares have plummetted–after the iconic sportswear company made Colin Kaepernick the face of their famous “Just Do It” campaign.
In early trading on Tuesday morning, Nike’s shares cratered by nearly 4 percent as of 9:30am. Bloomberg calls that the company’s “biggest intraday slide in five months”–and a 180-degree turn from Nike’s big gains throughout 2018.
Kaepernick, the former quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, drew nationwide attention–and nationwide criticism–after he began protesting the National Anthem in 2016 by taking a knee.
The controversy’s visibility skyrocketed in 2017, after President Trump heavily criticized both Kaepernick and the NFL for their actions. Multiple polls show that most Americans agree with Trump–and think that NFL players should stand for the National Anthem.
Over the weekend, Kaepernick tweeted a teaser of the new Nike campaign–using the caption, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”
Nike’s no stranger to politics: just a few weeks after Trump’s inauguration in 2017, they launched their “Equality” campaign that featured minority athletes, including fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad, who wears a hijab when competing.
But the latest embrace of leftist politics could leave Nike hurting… with hashtags like #BoycottNike and #JustBurnIt beginning to trend on social media, as share prices began to tumble.