Punch line: adidas is under fire after debuting an athletic shoe that contains rubber ankle shackles. adidas calls the shoe quirky and lighthearted, but consumers liken the shoe to slavery shackles. Despite initially defending the shoe, adidas has pulled the shoe from the Fall/Winter 2012 line, bowing to the power of consumers.
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Excerpted from brandchannel.com’s, “Adidas Sparks Uproar with Shackled ‘Slavery Shoe’”
adidas is under fire after posting a picture of its upcoming JS Roundhouse Mids on the adidas Originals Facebook page, designed by Jeremy Scott.
It’s not the colors or name that’s offending, but the rubber shackles attached to them that remind some observers (such as the Rev. Jesse Jackson) of the ankle chains that imprisoned African American slaves. That the “adidas” name is also part of the “shackles” is raising hackles (and heckles).
Even so, the brand defended the design and the designer. “Jeremy Scott is renowned as a designer whose style is quirky and lighthearted … Any suggestion that this is linked to slavery is untruthful.”
Nevertheless, despite initially defending the designer, adidas is pulling the shoe, stating: “We apologize if people are offended by the design and we are withdrawing our plans to make them available in the marketplace.”
Edit by BJP