People are destroying their Nike shoes and socks to protest its Colin Kaepernick ad campaign

  • Nike's new ad campaign stars Colin Kaepernick, the football player who refused to stand during the playing of the US national anthem.

  • People who believed Kaepernick had disrespected the US flag in his protests are now posting videos of themselves burning Nike products in response to the new ad campaign.

  • Others are saying that Nike, which raked in more than $30 billion in profits last year, would weather the protests.

  • Kaepernick said he didn't stand during the national anthem to protest racial inequality.

People in the US are destroying their Nike clothes to protest the company's new ad campaign starring football player Colin Kaepernick, who famously refused to stand during the playing of the US national anthem last year.

Kaepernick caused a stir when he sat on the bench while the anthem played before a NFL game in August 2016, in a move that he said was a protest over how the country treats black people and people of color. He has since kneeled in protest at several other games.

The new Nike campaign, which released on Monday night, hinted at Kaepernick's political stance with the words: "Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything."

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The practice of kneeling during the anthem proved divisive last year, however, with Trump characterizing it as disrespectful to the US flag and military. And on Monday, videos quickly emerged of people burning Nike shoes, cutting Nike's swoosh logo off socks, and in some cases vowing to never buy Nike products again.

Many posts included the hashtag #JustBurnIt, a play on Nike's "Just Do It" slogan.

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Country musician John Rich also tweeted that his sound technician, who he says is a former marine, cut off Nike's signature swoosh from his socks in protest.

Other commentators have noted that Nike, which earned $34.5 billion in annual revenue last financial year, would "be OK" despite the current protests.

Actor Zach Braff tweeted: "Nike ran the numbers. They'll be ok." He added sarcastically: "But please, burn your socks."

Bloomberg analyst Chen Grazutis also said on Tuesday: "The long-term relationship and a contract that benefits both parties over the next 10 years will likely outweigh any current controversy."

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Kaepernick's protests have garnered him support as well as criticism around the world.

Dozens of athletes in football and basketball, as well as cheerleaders and band members, have kneeled or sat in protest during the playing of the national anthem.

President Donald Trump has slammed athletes who followed Kaepernick's lead.

He suggested last September that NFL owners should stop those who kneel during the national anthem from playing games. He told a rally: "Wouldn't you want to see one of those NFL owners, when someone disrespects our flag, to say: "Get that son of a b---h off the field right now'?"

He also tweeted: "The issue of kneeling has nothing to do with race. It is about respect for our Country, Flag and National Anthem. NFL must respect this!"

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