It seems that those criticizing Nike for attempting to have a Betsy Ross flag on a pair of their shoes in celebration of Fourth of July forgot about former President Barack Obama using the same flags at his inauguration in 2013.
Nike stirred up controversy when they tried to have the earlier American flag, that displays 13 stars in a circle, on their Air Max 1 USA shoes but reportedly nixed the shoes after former National Football League player Colin Kaepernick called them offensive.
“Attention Nike: The flag Colin Kaepernick told you was unacceptable on your shoes was displayed rather prominently at Barack Obama’s inauguration,” the Washington Examiner’s Bryon York tweeted.
Attention Nike: The flag Colin Kaepernick told you was unacceptable on your shoes was displayed rather prominently at Barack Obama's inauguration. https://t.co/zbeXx2CFZc
— Byron York (@ByronYork) July 3, 2019
“Someone needs to tell Barack,” a Twitter user wrote, linking to several critics of the Betsy Ross flagged-themed shoes.
Democratic presidential hopefuls, including Obama’s Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), were happy about Nike’s decision to nix the controversial sneakers. Castro even said, “There are a lot of things in our history that are still very painful” in his response to Nike’s decision.
While O’Rourke said “it’s really important to take into account the impression that this kind of symbol would have for many of our fellow Americans,” it’s unclear if the two Democrats and other critics knew Obama had those flags hanging at his inauguration.
Someone needs to tell Barack. pic.twitter.com/1q9L6DGtc0
— Dave Rubin (@RubinReport) July 3, 2019
The president’s son Donald Trump Jr. also questioned the controversy over Ross’s flag.
“Weird that no one had a problem with The Betsy Ross Flag when it flew over Obama’s inauguration. Now it’s not patriotic… ok got it,” he tweeted.
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) July 3, 2019
“That Betsy Ross flag sure fell out of fashion quickly,” Daily Mail’s David Martosko tweeted.
Check out the reactions below:
That Betsy Ross flag sure fell out of fashion quickly. (Photo: 2nd Obama inaugural, 2013) pic.twitter.com/8xg8xCPLXb
— David Martosko (@dmartosko) July 3, 2019
Democrats running for president have officially lost it.
Beto & Castro strongly imply that the Betsy Ross flag is a symbol of hatred. Do the rest of the Dems agree?
Pictured here, of course, is the notorious flag prominently featured at President Obama's 2nd inauguration. pic.twitter.com/yfM9U8rG7Z
— Tim Murtaugh (@TimMurtaugh) July 3, 2019
Hey @Nike, this is a photo of Barack Obama's inauguration. Remember when you were complaining about those Betsy Ross flags back then?
Neither do I. pic.twitter.com/YZQnlcYKyO
— David Wohl (@DavidWohl) July 3, 2019
— The Daily Signal (@DailySignal) July 3, 2019
As IJR Red reported, Nike’s decision also drew responses from Republican lawmakers. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) joked that he’d “make the first order” of the sneakers if Nike or another shoe company decide to sell them with the Betsy Ross flag embroidered.