I was reading the other day that Nike took a less than Patriotic stand with one of their commercials. It reminded me of a number of previous events over the years. One of my favorite memory was about my parents.
Those of you who do not know, my parents came to the United States in 1967 originally from Hungary and my father was the proudest naturalized United States citizen you could ever meet. He was more American than those born in this country. He was always law abiding, never spoke bad of the country or the politicians who ran the country and was proud to be an American....
One day the price of sugar went astronomically high. The US Sugar Boycott was announced. My parents were outraged at the price increase and they joined their first boycott. They stopped buying sugar... it did not take a long time and the price of sugar dropped. As a young kid I learned something, if enough people get outraged and unite for a common cause they can change the course or should I say directions, by voting with their hard earned money.
Clearly there were many people beside my parents who felt the same way and the price of sugar dropped.
Fast forward to 1996 at the Summer Olympics there was a huge controversy. Nike did not pay $50 million to become the sponsor of the Olympics, instead chose to be what I considered a less than honorable strategy. They took out billboards all over with slogans like this:
"You don't win silver, you lose gold."
I found this to be in poor taste,and setting a poor example or should I say a poor slogan for all the hard working athletes that trained and competed to be told by NIKE, that if they won anything less than gold they were losers.
Clearly they were not worthy in my eyes and did not represent the Olympic Spirit I so admired all my life.
Being my parent's child, I voted with my money and never bought another Nike Product again. As far as I was concerned it was their loss and New Balance's gain.
So, the other day when I saw the controversial commercial it just reassured me that I made the right decisions in 1996.
Sadly as I wrote in my headline , that voting with your money "might change the attitudes of companies" in this instance it did not. On the other hand I am glad I stood by my original principal centered decision by not to support this company. Check out my picture to illustrate my point.
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