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Nike called out for glorifying crime with balaclava design

INSENSITIVE?: Nike x MMW Balaclava (Photo credit: Nike.com)

NIKE ARE facing scrutiny after images of a a black model in a Nike balaclava has been circulating on social media.

The image - which shows the man wearing the balaclava with what looks like a gun holster - was being sold on Nike UK's website for £70. It has caused uproar for its glorification of gang culture, with many expressing their disappointment in the brand.

YouTuber Mr DT took to Twitter on Sunday (Aug 19) and wrote: "THIS IS NOT RIGHT @nike @nikelondon I think you’ve made a big mistake on this one, targeting the current Gang culture for profit, there’s 100’s of dead kids parents that you should be thinking about before you made these, let alone put them out for sale."

Comedian White Yardie also took to social media to share his thoughts on the controversial item. He said Nike London look like they’re “targeting young people involved in gang crime, and with all the recent stabbings we’ve been seeing in London, this isn’t something we want to see”.

Recent Met figures show that knife crime has surged by 16 per cent and the total number of offences involving a knife or bladed instrument that have been recorded by police in the year to March 2018 rose to 40,147, a seven-year-high.

Official statistics from the Met Police also show there have been 1,299 stabbings in London up until the end of April and at least 51 people have been fatally stabbed in the capital since the beginning of the year.

In the Instagram clip, the comedian added that “we need to protect our youths” and that brands like Nike want to “exploit the youths.”

Since the release of White Yardie's video, more and more people are taking to social media to campaign against Nike London and call out the brand.


Photo credit: Nike website

"@Nike in a time where gang crime is at an all time high, especially in London, you go and release a balaclava for sale. At what stage in the marketing office was this a good idea? ," wrote one user.

Another said: "@Nike Stop selling the MMW Balaclava. We don't want you selling this item to our Kids, you are not only part of the problem. But you are profiting from it. Distasteful is an understatement."

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