A message for unity issued by Nike has not prevented one of its landmark stores in Chicago being looted amid the ongoing protests surrounding the death of George Floyd while in police custody.
Nike were among several international conglomerates to issue a message on Twitter in which they called for unity in a show of support to the late Floyd.
However, it doesn’t appear that the message was received loud and clear by some citizens in Chicago after a flagship Nike store on Michigan Avenue was destroyed and looted by rioters, leaving a trail of damage and destruction in their wake.
Emptied in seconds | #Nike store smashed & completely looted in #Chicagopic.twitter.com/wZWgJqoVjC
The rioting has been condemned by many who say that they understand and endorse citizens’ rights to protest what they view as police inequality but that the message is entirely undermined by the violence which sometimes comes with it.
According to reports from local media, almost all of the stores on the popular shopping strip in Chicago were damaged in some way, with popular brands like Zara, CVS, Walgreens and others also being targeted by looters.
In addition, several police cars were also destroyed in clashes between authorities and demonstrators. The city imposed a curfew beginning at 9pm local time on Saturday and ending at 6am Sunday.
“To be clear, I’ve marched in a few protests in my day, but neither I nor anyone that I was with saw the need to bring weapons in order to lift up our voice and express our First Amendment rights,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said.
“When you or anyone else behaves in this way, we all lose by giving the very same forces of oppression we are fighting against the false validation that they crave.”