A Chicago Cubs minor league affiliate baseball team has apologized for mocking former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s alleged role in nixing a new Nike sneaker that was emblazoned with the flag of the original 13 colonies.
The Tennessee Smokies responded a day after Nike recalled the shoe, reportedly because Kaepernick advised that the flag image was offensive and a reminder of slavery days. Kaepernick was the first NFL player to kneel during the National Anthem, allegedly because he was protesting police violence against African Americans. He became a free agent but wasn’t signed by any other NFL team, finally winning a settlement for collusion.
In response to Kaepernick’s role in shelving the flag shoe, the Smokies tweeted out an image of the 13-star Betsy Ross flag symbol on their infield.
The team’s marketing and community relations manager, Connor Pearce, called it a “lighthearted take on a current situation” in a talk with the Associated Press.
But later, the team removed the tweet and apologized without further explanation.