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Monday, September 03, 2018

Two free expression stories for Labor Day

First, Nike is celebrating the 30th anniversary of its Just Do It campaign. Here is the opening image, with the tag line "Believe in Something. Even if it means sacrificing everything." Good for Nike, which has always mixed its product advertising with political messages. I assume the company calculated the lost sales from the more than half the country that seems to oppose the player protests. Or it has more corporate courage than the NFL. DmMfV2QV4AAF11z


Second, a group called USA Latinx raised almost $ 10,000 in one day to rent this billboard for about $6000. The fundraising effort was helped by Parkland survivor David Hogg, who tweeted about the campaign. The billboard is a response to President Trump's announced plan to come to Texas to hold a rally in a big stadium in support of Ted Cruz's re-election campaign. Several contributors to the GoFundMe campaign urged the group to raise more money to put these ads all over the state.

32614890_1535818206259214_rI presume USA Latinx believes that money is not speech, that corporations have no speech rights, and that Citizens United is the fourth-worst SCOTUS decision ever. Do its leaders realize that this is a campaign expenditure and that they are a corporation or other entity? Do they realize that if money were not speech, there would be no limit on government halting such expenditures? Do they realize that a $ 5000 expenditure limit or a bar on expenditures within 90 days of an election (all perfectly lawful if money is not speech) renders this unlawful?

Posted by Howard Wasserman on September 3, 2018 at 05:48 PM in Culture, First Amendment, Law and Politics, Sports | Permalink



What was the big career risk? Kaep was--wait for it--an average player who had an average NFL career (actually better than average in terms of years played). He also had the misfortune of playing with Chip Kelly and playing in an college offense that has no transfer value to any other NFL team.

Players are counseled from the moment they enter the league that NFL careers are short careers and to take care of their money.

So, again, what's the big career risk? Especially if you're a backup who doesn't want to be a backup?

Again, I don't begrudge Kaep a payday, but I really think we should go ahead and stop the process of building him up as a monument to courage. At the same time, I'd prefer that the hero worship of the military stop as well.

Posted by: YesterdayIKilledAMammoth | Sep 5, 2018 11:57:14 AM

On the Nike issue, you suggest either that Nike crunched the numbers and decided it was better for their bottom line, or that they have more "courage," which I guess means that the management decided to knowingly pursue a course of action which is bad for their business, but is good for some other societal reason. Doesn't management have a duty to the shareholders to maximize value? If so, in order for this decision to be proper, wouldn't it have to be option A?

Posted by: Biff | Sep 5, 2018 10:06:28 AM


Taking a big career risk, and facining villification from a large part of the public, may not be the same as giving your life and not risking "everything" literally but it is more than most people would have the courage to do.

Posted by: Jr | Sep 4, 2018 10:49:01 AM

Why presume what Latinx believes?

Posted by: J.Bogart | Sep 4, 2018 3:22:41 AM

Kaepernick lost...a back up quarterback job--which, by all accounts, he didn't actually lose that (see: Broncos and Ravens)?

Pat Tillman lost his life.

Eh, I don't begrudge Kaep an endorsement, but let's not pretend this has anything to do with corporate courage or actually saluting real sacrifice. It's a payday for Kaep and a trendy cause for Nike.

But, hey, it seems that the advertisement worked!

Posted by: YesterdayIKilledAMammoth | Sep 3, 2018 7:18:37 PM

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