For a company with already a very controversial history, from being the offspring of the German Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik, Adidas has recently definitely gotten into hot water again.
Skipping the Nazi background (wow, has that phrase ever been written before?), PD has a number of issues with their latest JS Roundhouse Mid kicks, otherwise known as the Shackle Shoe.
Problem 1: The $350 price tag. Seriously? $350 large for sneakers? And sneakers that look that? Someone at Adidas Corp, needs to put that pearl accented crack pipe down.
Problem 2: Those hideous colors. What are they thinking? Does their target market really love Bob the Builder orange and soft suede purple that much? Really?
Problem 3: Okay, this has to be said, so pretend I’m not white for the rest of the article, that aforementioned target audience is young black men. There. Said it. Mean streets of L.A./New York. How much street cred can one have in soft suede purple?
Problem 4: When I first saw these, I thought this was Adidas’ half-hearted attempt to actually solve a problem a lot of their customers have—sneaker theft. Doesn’t Hollywood parlay the stereotype that most black men are jumped coming home from the library and their sneakers are either stolen, or tied together and thrown over a telephone wire? Right? Of course, those orange shackles don’t really look all that solid…
Problem 5: What the rest of the world saw when pics of these kicks hit Facebook was an allusion to slave ships, ROOTS, and the color purple, which I guess supports my point that Adidas’ target market does consist mostly of blacks (is it racist if it’s true?).
Problem 6: Adidas swears up and down that they had no idea these shoes would ever invoke thoughts of racism. Really? Adidas, your multi-billion dollar company, has a PR and marketing team that inept? Uh-huh. Sure. Seems legit.
Problem 7: Adidas even using this designer in the first place is a major mistake. Jeremy Scott, fashion’s answer to Mimi Bobeck, couldn’t be more out of touch with reality if he tried—and honestly it seems he puts a hell of a lot effort into trying. This is a man whose idea of class is this absurdity:
Problem 8: Even Mr. Scott says he can’t understand why people think his…creation is racist. He claims he modeled it after his My Pet Monster plush friend, seen below. Riiiiight. Sure, ya did. It’s not like you just ran across that thing yesterday and thought, “Hey, I could say it’s based off this thing to take the bigot heat off me.” Of course not, you’d never to that. You’re way too straight of a guy for that.
Problem 9: Clearly no company or person is this stupid to go with something like this, without another motive. So, what’s the real truth behind this? New Coke? No, I dare say it’s a way to drum up further race rage and class warfare, in time for Obama to cash in. This is deeper than it seems, which is sad, because playing in the shallow end is so much less depressing.