Mike Rowe weighed in on the controversy over Nike's new ad campaign with Colin Kaepernick in a powerful statement posted on Facebook.
We’re going to do something...
Rowe was responding to a question from a follower on the popular social media platform. The post was entitled, "We're Going to Do Something."
"You’ve been very quiet about the Kaepernick PR disaster at Nike," noted the commenter. "Any thoughts?"
He was referring to the controversial ad campaign with the former NFL quarterback who began the kneeling protests during the performance of the national anthem.
"Nike's free to celebrate whomever they wish," Rowe responded, "and Kaepernick is entitled to his opinion - kneeling, standing, or lying down. But if I was going to put someone's face on a billboard - someone who epitomized bravery and sacrifice - I might have gone another way, especially this time of year. I might have gone with this guy - Tom Burnett."
"Tom's last act on earth was one of the most courageous things imaginable," Rowe explained. "And his last words to his wife, Deena, are among the most inspiring I've ever heard. Those exact words are at the top of this page, and the bottom."
"They were spoken seventeen years ago," he added, "under conditions I hope to never experience. I'll never forget Tom's last words. I hope you won't either."
Rowe added a transcript of Tom Burnett's last calls to his wife, Deena, on 9/11, from the hijacked United Flight 93.
In the last call, Burnett tells his wife the passengers' plan to stop the hijackers from using the plane to kill more Americans.
Tom: We’re waiting until we’re over a rural area. We’re going to take back the airplane.
Deena: No! Sit down, be still, be quiet, and don’t draw attention to yourself! (The exact words taught to me by Delta Airlines Flight Attendant Training).
Tom: Deena! If they’re going to crash this plane into the ground, we’re going to have do something!
Deena: What about the authorities?
Tom: We can’t wait for the authorities. I don’t know what they could do anyway.
It’s up to us. I think we can do it.
Deena: What do you want me to do?
Tom: Pray, Deena, just pray.
(after a long pause)
Deena: I love you.
Tom: Don’t worry, we’re going to do something...
The phrase "We're going to do something," was meant by Rowe to contrast with the campaign motto from Nike, which is, "Just Do It."
Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything. #JustDoIt https://t.co/SRWkMIDdaO— Colin Kaepernick (@Colin Kaepernick) 1536002445.0
Yeah, that’s more like it. #justdoit
— Nike (@Nike) September 5, 2018
The country will commemorate the 17th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on Tuesday.
Here's a CBS report on the backlash against Nike's ad: