NICKMERCS Pride Month Controversy Explained, Backlash and Call of Duty Operator Removal

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NICKMERCS Pride Month Controversy Explained, Backlash and Call of Duty Operator Removal
Popular Twitch streamer NICKMERCS faces backlash for Pride Month tweet; Activision removes his Call of Duty operator.

Popular Twitch streamer Nick "NICKMERCS" Kolcheff, renowned for his gameplay on shooter games and battle royales such as Call of Duty and Apex Legends, has faced significant backlash following a controversial tweet about Pride Month.

What did NICKMERCS says about Pride Month?

On June 7, responding to a tweet about Pride Month being acknowledged in a school which escalated into a brawl resulting in three arrests, NICKMERCS commented, “They should leave the little kids out of it. That’s the real issue.” His statement, interpreted by some as suggesting that children should not be taught about sexual diversity, swiftly attracted criticism. Many accused him of being "anti-LGBTQ" and a "bigot", with critics insisting that Pride education is vital in schools.

However, the streamer, known for his legion of loyal followers known as MFAM, also received support from those who argued that parents should be the ones to decide when and how to introduce conversations around sexuality to their children.

NICKMERCS responded on his live stream

Addressing the incident on his Twitch stream the following day, NICKMERCS clarified that his tweet was not intended as an anti-LGBTQ statement. “I don’t have any quarrel with people on the internet. It wasn’t an anti — I guess — gay tweet. That wasn’t what it was. If you think that I hate you because you’re a certain way, you couldn’t be any more wrong,” he stated. Nevertheless, he stood by his original comment and refrained from issuing a full apology, although he did apologize to esports caster Puckett, to whom his initial tweet was a response.

NICKMERCS Call of Duty skin removal 

In an unexpected move, Activision, the publisher of Call of Duty, subsequently removed NICKMERCS' operator bundle from their games, Call of Duty: Warzone 2 and Modern Warfare 2, "due to recent events". The company stressed their commitment to celebrating Pride Month with their employees and community. The decision sparked mixed responses from the Call of Duty community, with some vowing to stop playing the game in protest, while others commended Activision's action.

NICKMERCS tweet about Call of Duty skin removal 

The following day, NICKMERCS addressed the removal of his operator, albeit indirectly. In a tweet, he thanked those who had supported him during the controversy. “Friends are created in good times, but families are built through adversity,” he posted, without directly referring to his earlier tweet or its repercussions. The renowned Twitch streamer's future actions amidst this controversy are yet to be seen.