Unfortunately for Mendenhall we live in a society where having your own opinion is frowned upon especially in corporate America. They prefer you are just a drone and go along with the popular opinion.
It is a gift and a curse.
Of course you want to get paid and increase your popularity, but you have to give up your soul. Mendenhall is a good example for a young athlete to decide what is more important. Their soul or their pockets.
Champion is the first company to publicly fire Mendenhall over his comments.
Here is the full statement.
Champion is a strong supporter of the government’s efforts to fight terrorism and is very appreciative of the dedication and commitment of the U.S. Armed Forces. Earlier this week, Rashard Mendenhall, who endorses Champion products, expressed personal comments and opinions regarding Osama bin Laden and the September 11 terrorist attacks that were inconsistent with the values of the Champion brand and with which we strongly disagreed.
In light of these comments, Champion was obliged to conduct a business assessment to determine whether Mr. Mendenhall could continue to effectively communicate on behalf of and represent Champion with consumers. While we respect Mr. Mendenhall’s right to express sincere thoughts regarding potentially controversial topics, we no longer believe that Mr. Mendenhall can appropriately represent Champion and we have notified Mr. Mendenhall that we are ending our business relationship. Champion has appreciated its association with Mr. Mendenhall during his early professional football career and found him to be a dedicated and conscientious young athlete. We sincerely wish him all the best.
The values of the Champion Brand is what stuck out to me. The Champion values must now include anyone who has a differing opinion will be fired.
I am sure the contract Mendenhall signed with them gave them the right to release him at any time, so they are within their legal rights, but just remember when you start to constantly having to worry about losing your job over using your “freedom” of speech, what type of country are we living in?
Think about that.