Nike ban reversed, mayor backtracks on order for city not to buy brand

A Louisiana mayor has backpedaled on his controversial order to not allow the city’s recreation department to buy Nike products for the city rec facilities.

Ben Zahn, mayor of Kenner, Louisiana, had issued a memo that banned the purchase of Nike equipment after the athletic company started an ad campaign featuring former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Kaepernick has been at the center of the debate of sports stars who take a knee during the national anthem as protest against police brutality and social injustice, NBC News reported.

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Credit: Scott Threlkeld/The Advocate via AP

Credit: Scott Threlkeld/The Advocate via AP

Zahn announced Wednesday that he rescinded the order on the advice of the city's attorney. He also hopes to bring the city back together again after the memo "placed Kenner in a false and unflattering light on the national stage," reported.

Zahn, however, did not apologize for the policy, reported.

Last week, Zahn issued the order that Nike products could not be bought for the city’s recreation facilities and it required that the parks and recreation director approve athletic purchases by booster clubs that used the city facilities.

Kaepernick was not mentioned in the memo.

"We're pleased the mayor reconsidered his divisive stance and rescinded this unconstitutional policy," Alanah Odoms Herbert, the executive director of the ACLU of Louisiana, told "The reversal of this ban is good news for the people of Kenner and all Louisianians, who have a constitutional right to express their political views free from government censorship or discrimination."

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