Shackle Shoes: Adidas Pulls Latest Sneaker Following Controversy

    June 19, 2012
    WebProNews Staff
    Comments are off for this post.

Shackle Shoes, which are also known on an official level as JS Roundhouse Mid, were designed by a guy named Jeremy Scott. Although he had intended this footwear to be fun, extravagant, and, perhaps, a little outrageous, the last thing he probably wanted his creation to spark was controversy. Racial controversy, at that. Apparently a large group of individuals from the African-American community were highly offended by the sneakers, due to the inclusion of a pair of shackles that could be fastened around the wearer’s ankle. Instead of viewing the kicks as cartoonish, they reminded a lot of people about slavery. As a result, the shoes were labeled racially insensitive, prompting Adidas to issue a statement.

“The design of the JS Roundhouse Mid is nothing more than the designer Jeremy Scott’s outrageous and unique take on fashion and has nothing to do with slavery,” read the statement.

This, of course, fell on deaf ears. In the minds of the offended parties, Adidas had committed an unforgivable sin. The statement did nothing to change the minds of those who were livid about the sneakers, including Reverend Jesse Jackson, who referred to the shoes in his Huffington Post blog as “human degradation”. As a result, the sneakers, which were scheduled to appear on retail shelves in August, were officially cancelled. Those of you who were hoping to invest your hard-earned cash in a pair of shoes that came equipped with orange “My Pet Monster” shackles, your dreams have been dealt a crushing blow.

If you pay a visit to the shoe’s announcement on the company’s Facebook page, you can read through over 3,000 user opinions, ranging from those who feel the shoes are a virtual slap in the face directed at the African-American community to folks who don’t understand how something so colorful and vibrant and seemingly innocent could be perceived in such a heinous manner.

Defeated and out of gas, the company issued a statement to the Daily News on the matter. “Since the shoe debuted on our Facebook page ahead of its market release in August, Adidas has received both favorable and critical feedback. We apologize if people are offended by the design and we are withdrawing our plans to make them available in the marketplace.”

Below you can find some Twitter reactions to the news. Although some people are upset by the appearance of these peculiar kicks, most people on the micro-blogging site are having a bit of fun with the announcement. Adidas controversy is our tickled rib. Take a look.

  • http://www.LAokay.com Steve G

    How come everything has to be put through the racial scope? I mean you can find racism in anything if you look small enough.

    • Amy

      I know; I don’t get it either. It’s like with TV–if it’s offensive, change the channel. If the shoes are offensive, don’t buy them. (They are ugly, but that’s beside the point.) Some people have nothing better to do than see hostility where there is none. If Jesus came back and told them to chill, they’d complain about the holes in his hands. (And I’m Jewish!)

    • Austin

      I find that racist

      • Austin

        ‘ere in ‘MERICA! I be thinkin all dem there liberals gonna be taken our ‘obs and givin ’em to dem dirty mex’can people, but this is ‘MERICA! and when we get that black muslum devil out the white house and get a REAL ‘MERICAN in, all things in our great CHRISTAN world will be right ‘gin and GOD BLESS DA RED WHITE N BLUE USA!!…

        ….please note the hints of sarcasm lightly peppered in here….

    • http://yahoo larry mchaney

      Austin, I find that stupid.

      • Tuwana McLaughlin

        Austin drop the sarcasm and comment again…

  • tk

    My first thought when I saw the pictures of the shoes wasn’t slavery – it was “These are really ugly shoes”. To me, the connection between these shackle shoes and slavery is weak at best. But the people who are professionally outraged, such as Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, have to keep the masses up in arms and agitated, or pretty soon they won’t have a parade to jump out in front of.

  • pete

    I know as I thought what a dumb concept for a shoe NOT oh look its racist. I guess that only slaves were black and there were never any white slaves. Could it be maybe since MOSTLY blacks wear these types of shoes is why it could be racist?

    maybe you should target ESPN for promoting the NBA and all of its ghetto thuggery instead of sports that are a little less ghetto.

    And yes there were white slaves. In fact, there were even black slave-holders. Down South, there’s a lot of poverty, and so, it came to pass that in order to survive and pay off debt, you become an indentured servant.

    It is true about the Slavs. The Vikings used to make regular raids into various places and carry off the inhabitants for the slave market in Muslim countries. The Moors dealt in slave trading all the time from Spain.

    The facts are that White slavery did exist, we have historical evidence, but because of secular politically correct agendas, these thruths were down played, omitted and twisted in contemporary history and literature.

    Jesse and Al forget this about history.

  • Jilllouise

    My first thought was someone in prison…not slavery. Not sure why anyone would want to look life a escaped felon, but thats me!

  • pete

    I know as I thought what a dumb concept for a shoe NOT oh look its racist. I guess that only slaves were black and there were never any white slaves. Could it be maybe since MOSTLY blacks wear these types of shoes is why it could be racist?

    maybe you should target ESPN for promoting the NBA and all of its ghetto thuggery instead of sports that are a little less ghetto.

    And yes there were white slaves. In fact, there were even black slave-holders. Down South, there’s a lot of poverty, and so, it came to pass that in order to survive and pay off debt, you become an indentured servant.

    It is true about the Slavs. The Vikings used to make regular raids into various places and carry off the inhabitants for the slave market in Muslim countries. The Moors dealt in slave trading all the time from Spain.

    The facts are that White slavery did exist, we have historical evidence, but because of secular politically correct agendas, these truths were down played, omitted and twisted in contemporary history and literature.

    Jesse and Al forget this about history.

    • B

      Ghetto thuggery?

    • c

      Did the white slave get hung for speaking to a black women?

      • Charlotte Rapacciuolo


      • Charlotte Rapacciuolo


      • Tuwana McLaughlin

        yes dear… blacks and whites never usually mix

  • Sammy C

    Those of you who didn’t think about salvery when you first saw these shoes,obviously your families do not have a history of being enslaved. Please explain to me what is fun about having shackles on? What is Adidas going to design next,Holocaust shirts with a big yellow Star of David and death camp serial number?

    • Black Man Tired of Racism


      When was the last time your family was enslaved? Oh yeah, not since the 1860’s. Of course you were around then to feel their troubles. Stop being part of the problem, weakling…

    • JJ

      No major company like Adidas would purposely make a racist shoe! THAT IS RIDICULOUSLY STUPID! YOU ARE RIDICULOUSLY STUPID!

  • B

    I am really shocked that there was outrage about the shoe. I am an African American woman, and did not make the connection of slavery when first viewing these shoes. All I thought was, “who would buy these????”. I’m glad the shoes were pulled because I don’t think they would have made much money on them at all anyway.

  • K Frey

    Why is everything about race, can’t do, say or make anything without offending someone……..so stupid.

  • Paula

    i actually thought they look like house arrest ankle bracelets…HA. could be fashionable while stuck in your house for the next few months. Lindsy Lohan could have been the model.

  • Zachary “Poetic Genius” Brooks

    I was really hoping they wouldn’t pull them these shoes were awesome. Stupid F***king people and their out landish opinions. A shoe is a shoe and your thoughts are your thoughts, but whos getting the big bucks? Addidas (The Shoe) or you (Your Opinions). why would addidas stake their reputation on something as stupid as slavery. And another thing, F**k Jesse motherf**king Jackson peice of can’t let the past go s**t for brains b**ch. Stop looking at Black folk as Africans they are americans not Africans. F***!!!!!!!!

  • pedro

    ugly styling and unfit with todays cool footwear,,,i’m really dissapointed with adidas.

  • Don Webster

    With all of these stupid porch monkeys getting the shoes mugged right off their feet, shackles might not be a bad idea.

    • Larry Bryant

      Don that was really ugly and a very stupid thing to say….i’d buy a pair just to plant up your A**.

      • Get

        Neither would burning down trailer parks.TRASH!

    • Larry Bryant

      By the way Donny…i’m in the white pages of the Houston directory if you want to show up on my porch

  • Larry Bryant

    That’s rediculous….being a black man i say, can’t you guys find a more serious cause to get upset over than this. Stop living in the past…..it’s over with, we’ve got the FREEDOM now and must move on. I find the shoe to be something different and probably a lot of fun. now one says you have to go out and buy a pair, just let it be. being 59 yrs. old, they simply wouldn’t fit into my wardrobe….so guess what, i’m not going to buy them but if my grandchildren or children for that matter wanted them, then so be it.

    • bonnie

      I applaud you. Blacks take everything to be offensive. Stop living in the past is the best advice this man can offer and he is so right. It is only a shoe. Dont buy it if you dont like it. there are so many brands out there,.

      • Daniel

        tell that to the jews

    • Get

      LOL. You are obviously a fraud claiming to be black. Your probably PR for adidas. NO BLACK MAN WOULD EVER SAY THIS! Or educated on the history of slavery black African-American in general! Please. SCREW YOU ANDDDDDDDD adidas!

      • Get

        Yea- we take STUPID WHITE FOLKS to be VERY offensive!

        • Kimberly

          Hey Get, Get a life.

  • sots

    You sorry pieces of crap.
    You spend so much of your time lookin thru the news to see what you can bitch about instead of living your own life.
    As your walking down that road of life, stop lookin over your nieghbors fence to see what offends you.
    You people make me so sick.
    Worry about what happens in your own life instead of other people do with there life.

    • Get

      Seriously? You uneducated white person! Your the SORRY PIECE OF CRAP! Practice what you preach and not comment on something that you are OBVIOUSLY clueless about! So you wanta be a name slinger? That’s all your kind does….intimidation is your only power and you DON”T INTIMADT ME! LOSER!

  • daniel

    the concept was not about slaves it was about BONDAGE as is sex. there isa a very strong undercurrent of bd/sm in today’s youth, the design of these shoes tried to tie into that.

  • castellanost

    When I first saw these shoes I thought of inmates…maybe they should complain about how offensive this is for them as well?

  • faith

    I’m black and some of us need to stop being so sensitive! Slavery is not the only bondage around! I do understand how important slavery is to our history, but we as a people have to stop giving it so much power. Racism will always exist and is still present as long as we have ignorant people in this world!

    • dan


      Years ago I drove a cab for awhile. One day I got a young black man in my cab who from the start, tried baiting me into a very bias and racial conversation for no reason, other than the fact I’m white. After 20 min. of very aggressive reverse racial banter, I said ” I agree with you totally !” (that really pissed him off) then I told him I had a life long dream of starting a magazine intended for whites only. White advertising ads, white people health articles, white writers, white editors…white everything. A magazine marketed to whites only. He nearly lost his mind !!! I instantly became the black mans public enemy number 1 !!! then I reached under my seat and pulled out a copy of ebony and the latest jet editions that another customer had left to me earlier in the day. I finally received the silence I felt I deserved for the rest of the trip. by the way NO TIP WAS OFFERED !


  • http://none Dario Smith

    ADIDAS…They make $$$ using colored people…

    • Ed

      I’m pretty sure the Black Community wouldn’t know what to do with “40 acres and a mule”. To most in that community food comes from the “grocery store”…

  • BeerGolf906

    Al and Jesse are the biggest racists around. Always making everything racially charged. Slavery is some 10 year old child in a third world country making chump change to make these shoes.

    • Ray

      Yet it’s fine with the blacks that Spike Lee has a clothing line called “40 Mules and an Acre”? I bet that if they were marketed by him they would be a huge hit. I’m just saying

    • Ave

      Slaves don’t get paid. Just putting that out there.

      • Jamarr

        Spike Lee’s company is called 40 Arces and a Mule for starters. It is a reference to an unfulfilled government promise to give freed slaves a plot of 40 acres and a mule to work the land as a part of the Reconstruction period.

        • http://yahoo larry mchaney

          Jamarre, where do you get the “fact” that it was unfulfilled. Maybe you haven’t read the black claim that says that whites took advantage of blacks by buying their small blocks of land at below market prices after the blacks decided to move from the south after the civil war. You can’t have it both ways.

    • Scotty
  • Ed

    Oh Brother “Reverend Jesse Jackson, who referred to the shoes in his Huffington Post blog as “human degradation”. Al, Jesse et al why don’t you start a campaign to have the Black Community pull up their pants!

    • Charlotte Rapacciuolo

      It lead me to racist thoughts but not of slavery. I saw prison shackles. My initial thought was of black men in prison playing ball in the yard. I know that is racist and I didn’t even realize that I was racist but that really was my first reaction to the shoes.

    • Matt

      nah… i’d rather a campaign got started to get scared white people to quit caring about how someone dresses. i’ll bet my last dollar you dress like a faggot.

  • eee

    I thought it was in bad taste because it looked to me like they were the shackles used in jail. I didn’t think anything about slavery.

  • ryan

    are you fucking kidding me slavery, really jessie jackson you are an idiot go back to 1980 and your rainbow coalition, whats next charles manson says he loves them so they bring them back, maybe they should inventa pair of pants to keep these punk asses pants around their waists, you dipshits know the further down they are the bigger bitch you are in jailk right you punk ass mother fuckers.

    • Tuwana McLaughlin

      couln’t have said better ryan

    • Matt

      yeah it means that in prison not out on the streets, you punk ass mother fucker. get over yourself. i’ll bet you’re a SKINNY LITTLE WHITE BOY THAT GOT PUNKED BY SOME BLACK GUYS AND NOW SPENDS HIS DAYS CRYING LIKE A LITTLE BITCH. get the hell over yourself, you arn’t special. i’ll bet you pull those pants right up into the crack of your faggot ass, in place of the dick that usually resides there.

  • http://yahoo larry mchaney

    I suspect a large segment of the black community was upset more because it reminded them of incarceration than slavery.

  • donald

    Ase all know that there are something,s that you just don,t do, and this is one of them.Yes everyone need,s to make money,but why would think of something like that thing,s are bad enough as it is and it dosen,t need to get any worse.Think about it, would you really want shackle,s on if they were real , NO so put yourself in the place of other,s that had to wear the real thing , and then you tell me how you feel after having them on yourself.

    • Matt

      shut the hell up. fuck the others that had to wear the real thing. there are no slaves alive from back in the day that had to wear shackles. in fact the only people alive today that have had to wear shackles, are criminals you damn tool. you must be a criminal, only a criminal would be mad about shackle shoes.

  • Anita

    Grow the hell up people !! I don’t remember seeing too many pictures of slaves wearing shoes, do you ? I think the shoes are a bit ridiculous, but they certainly did not bring to mind slavery, and I am black for Christ’s sake !! Unfortunately, they did cause me some mild distress though because they reminded me of the brief but traumatic time I spent in jail as a young girl. You would think they would be more offensive to our criminal population…?!?

  • Alkebu

    Why is everyone so surprised that Madison Avenue would even consider offering up this product to the general public for consumption? Just look at the timing in a few months there will be a national election for the highest office in the country. For all the media pretense that all is so much better today than yesterday in the United States of America this product shines a “Bright Light” on the mindset of the movers and shakers in corporate America. For years there have been murmurs and grumblings about the profound disconnect from the top down in today’s culture. Now those murmurs have become loud and clear. The average citizen isn’t going to fall in line with the idiocy of the so called cultural and social steering committee, aka cultural-social media. Madison Avenue got this one clearly and humiliatingly wrong for themselves and the future of this nation. This nation’s blatantly most inhumane moment in history is still a fresh open sore not to be picked at. Or maybe that is the point. Someone said, “Racism” is a thing of the past, the proof that it isn’t is this product. It is more than the manufacturer, the consultants, and the Retail outlets, that they in lock step would consider to be a great product to sell the young impressionable consumers. Who were clearly targeted to purchase this atrocity. In the next few days there will be a ground swell of indignity and finger pointing. But the lesson will go unlearned and in a few more months or even years the “Pink Elephant in the Room” will rear its ugly head again, and even again. No, I wasn’t surprised because I’ve seen the real history of this nation and all things being equal it can boast of cultural and ethnic sensitivity but the truth is it doesn’t embrace or care about diversity or inclusion never did and most likely never will. No one is asking or demanding anything special, all that is required is “Respect.”. The same respect that is to be accorded any other person in this nation. There is one line in the “Pledge of Allegiance” that speaks to this point; “One nation under God indivisible with liberty and justice for all.”

  • Kimberly

    I read “most” of these comments and I can only think that these are the people that I walk by everyday, the people that I deal with in business and the people that surround me that I must interact with to live my life. How sad. How ignorant and pathetic. These shoes are ridiculous but that’s my opinion not because they have house arrest cuffs on them but because to me they are just down right ugly. Why should they be pulled off the market because someone was offended by them? I get offended often to but I choose to not put myself in the situations that upset me. I am an adult so I walk away or I choose not to purchase certain things. I for one hate cigerettes but I don’t go crying to the president because I was offended because someone wanted to kill themselves smoking. I didn’t say it was a ploy against me because a black man was smoking and I had to smell it so he was killing me and it was racist. Larry Bryant I wish everyone could think like you. People who have issues with this need to stop crying get over themselves and focus on real issues that are destroying mankind, not a pair of Adidas shoes that hurt someones feelings. WAHHHH cry babies!

    • Tuwana McLaughlin

      which mad house come up with this crazy idea!!!!! do thet know what this shows to t typical black race?

  • Bnasty

    I like how it becomes a black versus white issue, like everything tends to in this country. Some time its deserving so like Katrina for example. However isn’t Adidas based in Germany? Didn’t German Nazi’s chain up Jews? Just saying. I have no idea what the intention was but I think this is a sign shoe companies are running out of ideas. Most of these $100 sneakers are real ugly. To the point I would rather walk barefoot showing off my corns.

  • http://cwferrari@gmail.com Chriss

    These originated from a German company and they can sell them any where in the World except for maybe the US because of the Racism. Germans burned Jews in Ovens. American Indians scalped Whites and Spanish Pirates. The Jews were slaves to the Romans and Slavery is going on in other country’s. Jessie Jackson stop living in the past. A large part of the world has suffered due to slavery. In some parts of the world Children are slaves and used as Soldiers as young as 10 years old. Africa sold the some blacks as slaves. You are a Racist. And what about Sex slavery going on right now. Ths is 2012. Wake up. Hating someone because of their color only makes hate. It is the all you are about. Why do you not acknowledge the white people who died and used the Constitution so all Colors can be free. Not all white people were slave owners. They all had Plantations and were wealthy. Not all Whites are rich nor did the Ancestors have slaves. Why don’t you star telling the truth. They are all Dead.

  • http://cwferrari@gmail.com Chriss

    Do not bother emailing me about my spelling below, For some reason it posted the original not the spell checked version.

  • jobie

    As if the black race were the only ones in history to be enslaved. Get a grip. Slavery long predates Americans enslaving Africans. Yes, the shoes are stupid looking. I suppose regardless of why they are taken off, at least we don’t have to see people wearing something so silly and roll our eyes and wonder why.

  • mike

    Amazing, young Black men wear their pants around their knees, which I thought was indecent exposure, why would they care about a pair of “shackled sneakers”, come on really!!!

  • J

    I wonder what kind of person Addidas expects to buy this product.

  • Kenny

    What is the big deal? If you like them, Buy them, If you don’t like them, leave them on the shelf.
    I think that the one that buy them are just in training for when the get the real ones from the Dept. of prisons.
    These are NOT shackles, they are a anti theft device!!

  • Traveler

    Just sjhows you how… captive the black mind still is… still of the “slave mentality”. How can one NOT see the negative implications of such an item? You can free the body… but the black mind is still captive of the slave masters… corporate, entitlement-thinking, white Americans. This is NOT to say all white Americans think this way.. but many still do… and blacks still submit….. so sad… so VERY sad!!!! Wake up black folks… stop being fools!

  • Mary

    To heck with “shackles” debate, they just look very uncomfortable to me.

  • Allan

    I think they should be marketed to the BDSM community. They’d be a hit.

  • Drew

    Racism is afoot!!

  • http://yahoo KMike

    You wonder who would buy this crap, except you know somebody would, just to say they did. Wonder if the designer had been a person of color if you would have heard from the race pimps? I doubt it. It would have suddenly been silent, or spokespersons would have proclaimed the design brilliant in reference to the ‘struggle’, the plight of people of color in America. To me, they were shoes that sucked, pure and simple, and they likely did Adidas a financial favor by raising enough hell to pull them from production.

  • http://yahoo wogewan

    all that aside, are they comfortable?

  • anthony chmielewski

    Do they come with an overcrowded boat voyage?

  • Chris PIPPIN

    Does it surprise you that they are LA LAKER colors??!!! Do They come in red and blue too?? I want some blue ones!! Thats some cooool sh**!!

  • Don’t Worry About It

    Hey Rev, just because there are some shackles, cuffs, or bindings to pair of shoes in no way is degrading to any race. Maybe a sexy couple would find use to them….fucking idiot. Get your head out of your ass and quit finding anything on the market or the media to further your pursuit of black rights when they already have them in modern day society you old ass idiot. There are plenty of white or whatever color people too that are in shackles. Suck your history books dick and realize things have changed. Me personally, I just wanted them for sex with my girl and your sorry ass took them off the market.

    • jo

      welcome to america nothing’s changed people are still racist and it will ALWAYS be that way. not everyone is going to use them to fuck their girls in which that in itself is completely retarded. the shoe is RIDICULOUS get it together.

  • DeniseR

    Someone just lost their job…