The decision by Nike to withdraw a shoe which features an old American flag has raised the ire of Senator Ted Cruz who questioned the patriotism of the footwear’s main critic.

Former NFL star Colin Kaepernick was unhappy with the sports company introducing the “Air Max 1 Quick Strike Fourth of July shoe, in time for Independence Day, because it featured 13 stars in a circle.

Kaepernick, who was the centerpiece of a major ad campaign for Nike last year, contacted the company and said he and others were offended by the 18th century “Betsy Ross” flag, due to its links to an era associated with slavery.

In a statement, Nike appeared to back down, saying that it “has chosen not to release the Air Max 1 Quick Strike Fourth of July as it featured the old version of the American flag.”

Cruz tweeted: 

 “It’s a good thing @Nike only wants to sell sneakers to people who hate the American flag…. @NFL#HappyFourth


It is not clear what pressure Kaepernick put on Nike.

The former quarterback played for the San Francisco 49ers and in 2016 he knelt during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial inequality. Somehow he still constantly makes headlines. 

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