A new shoe by adidas is drawing some fire for including shackles. Many believe that the shackles invoke slavery. (Courtesy of Adidas Facebook page)
McLean, VA (written by Michael Hiestand/USA Today) -- Sneaker marketers sell edginess. But adidas cancelling a shoe that wasn't even going to debut until August is the latest example of sneakers being too edgy.
The adidas JS Roundhouse Mid, bagged Monday after burgeoning online criticism that its ankle shackles smacked of slavery, was the just latest example of sneaker gaffes. (Adidas, in a statement, said "we apologize if people are offended by the design.")
Nike this spring shelved a Black and Tan shoe meant to debut around St. Patrick's Day after criticism that the name wasn't just a reference to a drink -- it also evoked memories of a English-related paramilitary force noted for its harsh attacks on Irish during the 1920s.
Hey, that'll happen. Like when Umbro a decade ago had a shoe called Zyklon, after the German word for Cyclone. Big mistake: Zyklon was also the name for a gas that Nazis used to murder Jews in concentration camps.
Previously, Nike created (and recalled) a shoe with a logo that looked like Arabic script for Allah. And in 2003, a Nike basketball sneaker called Loaded Weapon -- endorsed by Dwyane Wade -- drew some criticism because, oh, guns can be dangerous. Especially loaded ones.