Entries in Slavery (2)


Adidas Cancels Controversial ‘Shackle’ Shoe

Adidas(NEW YORK) -- Adidas has canceled plans to release a sneaker adorned with rubber fasteners after an image of the shoe posted on the Adidas Originals Facebook page ignited a firestorm of controversy.

The photo of the shoes, dubbed JS Roundhouse Mids by the company, is captioned, “Tighten up your style with the JS Roundhouse Mids dropping in August. Got a sneaker game so hot you lock your kicks to your ankles?”

Critics, including the Rev. Jesse Jackson, have called the shoe racist and intensive, saying it evokes the era of slavery.

Criticism was not universal, however. The photo received nearly 38,000 likes on Facebook. But that was not enough to stop Adidas from canceling the shoe, which was expected to hit stores in mid-August.

In a statement emailed to ABC News, Adidas defended the shoe and its designer, Jeremy Scott, saying, “Our collaboration with Jeremy Scott has always stood for creativity and originality.  Jeremy Scott is renowned as a designer whose style is quirky and lighthearted and his previous shoe designs for adidas Originals have, for example, included panda heads and Mickey Mouse. 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.”

In the same statement, however, the company also apologized for the shoe, saying, “Since the shoe debuted on our adidas Originals 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.”

Designer Scott has said the shoes were inspired by a 1980s children’s toy called My Pet Monster, which has similar shackles.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


D.C. Celebrates Emancipation Day, Nation Gets Extension on Taxes

Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -– Wondering why your taxes are due three days later - April 18 this year? It's because city workers in D.C. have the day off to celebrate Emancipation Day.

On April 16, 1862, Washington, D.C. became the first city in America to have slavery abolished by the federal government. City employees are celebrating Friday with an unpaid furlough day.

The official celebration of the holiday is Friday, so that means no school, no parking tickets and no trash pick-up for residents of the district, but for the nation it means the tax filing deadline is pushed back to midnight on Monday. The filing deadline is only changed if it falls on Emancipation Day, a Sunday or during a presidentially-declared disaster such as Hurricane Katrina.

"Emancipation Day kind of has a double meaning for D.C. It commemorates the emancipation of slaves... but also has a symbolic meaning is as far as D.C. being emancipated, eventually, from federal government control over local issues," said Rob Marus, a spokesman for the mayor's office who spoke to ABC News, despite having the day off.

Washington's unpaid furlough day is intended to help ease the district's budget problems. The city council passed an emergency budget provision in late 2010 establishing four already-celebrated public holidays, including Emancipation Day, as furlough days where city employees would not be paid. This provision will save the district $19 million in 2011.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio