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The former Green Beret who convinced Kaepernick to kneel explains why Nike ad troubles some vets

Nate Boyer, the Green Beret who encouraged Colin Kaepernick's kneeling protest, speaks out about the controversial Nike campaign. (Image source: YouTube screenshot)

Nate Boyer, the former Green Beret who helped usher in Colin Kaepernick's national anthem kneeling protest, is speaking out on Nike's controversial new campaign for "Just Do It" that features the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback.

What's the backstory?

Boyer, who also briefly played in the NFL for the Seattle Seahawks, encouraged Kaepernick to kneel during the playing of the national anthem after Kaepernick first began protesting for minorities' equal treatment and police brutality in 2016.

Boyer convinced Kaepernick that instead of sitting on the bench for the national anthem, kneeling during "The Star-Spangled Banner" would make a better statement, done in a more respectful way to veterans.

What's he saying now?

Boyer said that both he and many of his fellow veterans don't necessarily take issue with Nike's new ad campaign featuring Kaepernick, which has led to protests from some Nike customers.

The ad's tagline reads "Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything."

According to Popular Military, Boyer said that Nike's new ad is a "pretty good business decision" if nothing else.

"[Nike] wouldn't have done this if they didn't think it was going to be profitable," the former Green Beret explained. "There's no doubt about that."

However, Boyer can understand why the campaign's ad — and its message — could bother some veterans.

"I’ve got a lot of people in the veteran community maybe that take more offense to the message of sacrificing everything more than the fact that Kaepernick is sort of the focus of the campaign," Boyer said, apparently alluding to the fact that many veterans have sacrificed much more than Kaepernick, perhaps, has.

"Some people here are maybe hurt by the slogan itself," he added. "But I’m not going to say [Kaepernick] hasn’t sacrificed quite a bit. There’s no doubt about that."

Boyer went on to explain that while this doesn't necessarily mean he supports Kaepernick, he was adamant that he will always defend his rights.

“I don’t necessarily support Kap, but I will always stand up for his rights,” Boyer added.

Anything else?

Boyer isn't the only person with military ties who has spoken out about the controversial ad. Taya Kyle, wife of slain Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, has been vocal with her criticism of the ad.

After Nike's ad launched Monday, Kyle penned a lengthy Facebook post which said that she was disappointed with Nike's choice in Kaepernick.

"You want to talk about someone in the NFL sacrificing everything? Pat Tillman. NFL STARTING, not benched, player who left to join the Army and died for it. THAT is sacrificing everything for something you believe in," Kyle wrote, and indicated that other warriors that have defended America's freedoms.

"They did it because they believed in something. Take it from me, when I say they sacrificed everything, they also sacrificed the lives of their loved ones who will never be the same," Kyle added. "THAT is sacrificing everything for something they believe in."

Kyle said that she doesn't believe that Kaepernick sacrificed anything of substance as a result of spearheading the national anthem protests.

Instead, she wrote, "he gained popularity and magazine covers he likely wouldn’t have gotten without getting on his knees or as you say, 'believing in something.'"

You can read the full post below:

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