Nike and the Arrogance of Moral Certainty
Russ Klein

“Moral certainty is always a sign of cultural inferiority,” said journalist H.L. Mencken. “The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong.”

This is problematic. Certain moral absolutes do exist. Chattel slavery for example is a moral absolute. The eventual condemnation of chattel slavery was a sign of civility, not the absence of it.

The author seems to think it was arrogant for Nike to draw a line in the sand between right and wrong. I would argue that it was a basic display of decency, and for all of us to have the courage and inner moral compass to do the same.

In terms of marketing, Nike took a wise calculated risk. Nike’s customer base is trending towards an acute awareness of the need for more social justice. They took notice and jumped in front. The days of the soulless company are ending (for now at least).

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