Reflecting on the distasteful news that Nike is again cashing in on Pride month with their #BeTrue campaign, after their lack of any action over Sochi and the LGBTQ abuses in Russia. It’s one thing to flog rainbow gear made in coutnries where the locals aren’t free to express their seuxality and gender to people thinking they are being fluffy and supportive, and another to actually stand up and be counted. Like for instance, some of the companies in Indiana, Texas and Arkansas over the Religious Freedom Act. I don’t see any of these mega corporates making such a stand?
[image from Adbusters]
The ironic thing is they are also being dragged into the FIFA scandal, having paid bribes to get the Brazil team into Nikes even though the official FIFA sponsor is Adidas….all very under the counter.
So they’ll both be there in Qatar for the World Cup in 2022, as will Coca Cola, McDonalds and the rest…supporting again a terrible regime, where nearly a thousand peeople have already died in the building of the stadiums over there, with a projected 4,000 in total by 2022. In contrast, there was one death in the construction of the 2012 London Olympics, and that was a heart attack of a crane driver which was unavoidable. The migrant workers have their passports taken away, live and work in bad conditions, so they are essentially slaves, and the Nepalese now can’t go home anyway because of the earthquakes. Is this the image that these sponsors want, of a Egyptian pyramid building slave mob, and about as fatal?
But Tim, you say, you don’t care about sport? Yes, you’re correct, but I care about human rights, and that international sport is mostly politics in disguise. I’m glad Sepp Blatter is gone, and I hope after they’ve finished with FIFA that the corrupt IOC is next. But it goes far deeper, into geopolitics, slave labour, the developing world, abuse, corruption and deaths – and pointless stadiums. Some of the expensive white elephants in Brazil have never been used since about a year ago.
Is that progress?
Thing is, they don’t care about you or me or human rights. All they care is the bottom line, not the people at the bottom of the stack, buying or making their shoes, being attacked for who they are, who they love or what they believe in. That’s really #BeingTrue to yourself.
Images from this site, holding a sort-of contest for the best anti-sponsor Qatar related images. Some real great images on there.