Jordan not walking away from Nike deal

A recent social media post claims Bulls legend Michael Jordan has severed ties with athletic-wear company Nike.

“Michael Jordan Rejects Nike's $10 Million Deal Says ‘I’m Not Saving Your Woke Brand,’” reads the text on the Jan. 8 Facebook post that includes an image of Jordan next to an image of the Nike swoosh.

But there is no evidence this has happened, according to USA Today. The claim is based on a story that originated on the parody website Esspots. The site’s About page states, “Our team of writers and editors is dedicated to bringing you the latest and greatest in fake news and absurdity, all with a healthy dose of humor and satire.”

Jordan has been working with Nike since 1984, and as of 2023 he has earned an estimated $1.5 billion from the partnership, USA Today said.

Nike has faced criticism recently due to its stance on social justice issues and its support of controversial football player and social justice advocate Colin Kaepernick.

This post is an example of “stolen satire,” USA Today said, in which stories originally written as satire are reposted without the information that it is parody. Readers then assume it to be legitimate news.

Watermelon mug not a statement on war

Months ago, coffeehouse chain Starbucks released its summer collection of mugs and cups featuring bright colors and its logo. Some social media users have claimed the watermelon coffee mug was a way for the corporation to show support for Palestinians during the Israel-Hamas war.

Toward the end of last year Starbucks faced a boycott from some customers due to conflicts with its union and a perception of its stance on the war.

“it’s giving ‘we’re so sorry pls come.’ y’all ain’t fooling us. we still boycotting,” read a post on X. A TikTok post stated, “Are you all as confused as I am? #watermelon #palestine #starbucks #boycottstarbucks.”

But the watermelon mug, made up in green with an image of the fruit, doesn’t have anything to do with the Israel-Hamas war, according to the Associated Press.

The drinkware was issued before the conflict began and any stores using the mugs would just be using stock leftovers from the summer release, Starbucks spokesperson Jaci Anderson told the AP.

The colors in a slice of watermelon match those in the Palestinian flag and imagery of the fruit has been used as a symbol of solidarity.

Starbucks has not taken an official stance on the war.

No ties between Whitewater scandal and bombing

A social media claim, involving former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, circulated on social media last month, suggesting evidence on the couple was destroyed in the 1995 bombing at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

“Reminder: This building in Oklahoma City was blown up and destroyed just 4 days before Hillary Clinton was to be indicted in the Whitewater scandal. All documents lost!” reads a Dec. 26, 2023, Facebook post that includes an image of the bombed building.

But there is no evidence that this is true, according to Reuters.

The Clintons were investigated over their involvement in the real estate venture known as Whitewater, but were never charged. In September 2000, prosecutor Robert W. Ray said, “the evidence was insufficient to prove to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Any documents from the Clinton administration, including any concerned with the Whitewater scandal, are held by the National Archives. Many were released in 2014. None were held at the Murrah building.

Jeff Gerth, who wrote the book “Her Way, The Hopes and Ambitions of Hillary Rodham Clinton,” told Reuters there were many factors that led investigators to not charge the Clintons.

“I interviewed the prosecutors involved in these decisions and never heard a mention of the Oklahoma City bombing,” he said.

Singer posted fake letter

Singer Lil Nas X is known for mocking religion and using Christian imagery and themes in his songs and music videos. In the video for the 2021 song “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” he gives Satan a lap dance.

So the singer had social media users confused when he posted to Instagram an acceptance letter to Liberty University, a Christian school in Virginia, along with the comment, "I know some of yall hate me right now but i want yall to know I’m literally about to go to college for biblical studies in the fall. Not everything is a troll!”

“Disapointed, disgusted & feeling uncomfortable,” read a comment on the post.

But the post is fake, according to the Washington Post. A Liberty University spokesperson told the Post the singer, whose real name is Montero Hill, never applied.

“Liberty University did not issue the Montero Hill ‘acceptance letter’ posted yesterday to social media, and we have no record of Montero Hill applying to the University,” the spokesperson said.

The fake acceptance letter is signed by University founder Jerry Falwell, who died in 2007.

• Bob Oswald is a veteran Chicago-area journalist and former news editor of the Elgin Courier-News. Contact him at

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