It was 1987 when the world first, err, ran into the Nike Air Max. The original was by Tinker Hatfield, actually an architect who started at Nike designing stores but eventually segued into sneakers (he’s now the company’s vice president of special projects and design).
Nike planned to celebrate the Fourth of July with a new sneaker, a special edition of the Air Max 1 Quick Strike featuring that most patriotic of symbols: an American flag.
But rather than including a flag with 50 stars as part of its design, the sneaker’s heel Adidas Gazelle Dámské
featured the 13-star model, a design associated with the Revolutionary War, the Philadelphia seamstress Betsy Ross and, for some people, a painful history of oppression and racism.
On Tuesday, Nike canceled the release of the sneaker, again plunging headlong into the nation’s culture wars.
The abrupt cancellation came after Colin Kaepernick, the former National Football League quarterback and social justice activist, privately Nike Epic React Flyknit Mujer
criticized the design to Nike, according to a person with knowledge of the interaction.
Mr. Kaepernick, who signed a lucrative deal to serve as a Nike brand ambassador last year, expressed the concern to the company that the Betsy Ross flag had been co-opted by groups espousing racist ideologies, the person said.
Sandra Carreon-John, a company spokeswoman, said in a statement on Tuesday that Nike had made the Adidas Eqt Support Adv Mujer
decision to “halt distribution” of the sneaker “based on concerns that it could unintentionally offend and detract from the nation’s patriotic holiday.” The company’s initial acknowledgment of the recall hours earlier did not explain the reasoning behind the decision.
While people all across the political spectrum debated the issue on social media, Gov. Doug Ducey, Republican of Arizona, announced on Twitter that he would pull Nike Air Max Thea Femme
back state support for a Nike facility that would have employed more than 500 people. Nike had proposed to open the $184 million plant in Goodyear, Ariz.
“Words cannot express my disappointment at this terrible decision,” Mr. Ducey said in a series of tweets, adding that Nike “has bowed to the current onslaught of political correctness and historical revisionism.”
The governor, who had previously called the Nike Air Max 97 Dames
factory “an exciting project,” also said: “Arizona’s economy is doing just fine without Nike. We don’t need to suck up to companies that consciously denigrate our nation’s history.”
Susan Marie, a spokeswoman for the Arizona Commerce Authority, said the economic development agency was withdrawing the offer of a grant to Nike, worth up to $1 million, “at the governor’s discretion.”
In a statement Tuesday, the City of Goodyear Asics Gel Quantum 360 Womens
called the furor “a difficult situation” but said its offer of financial incentives to Nike still stood, as elected officials from New Mexico sought to capitalize on the uncertainty and lure the plant across the state line.
Nike’s upcoming Air Max 720 is perhaps the biggest touchstone yet on that evolutionary path. Set for a debut early next year in both Swoosh and Jumpman silhouettes alike, the 720 holds the Nike Air Max 2016 Womens
distinction of not only being a lifestyle-centric cushioning technology, but also the single biggest Air-Sole unit in the history of the Beaverton sportswear giant.
With the 720 right around the corner, we take a look back at some of the most important hallmarks in air-centric sneaker tech over the past 40 years.
The Tailwind is the one that started it all. Released in limited quantities in 1978 for the Honolulu Marathon, Nike Internationalist Damen
the Tailwind debuted the Swoosh’s first-ever Air-Sole unit — a concept pioneered by aerospace technology specialist Frank Rudy and one that was first brought to Nike in 1977. After creating buzz and selling out immediately in Hawaii, the Tailwind was released to the masses in 1979 and the rest is history.