Kanye West’s comments about slavery being a choice now threatens to jeopardize his partnership with Adidas.
On Tuesday, the rapper said during a bizarre interview with TMZ: “When you hear about slavery for 400 years — for 400 years? That sounds like a choice. Like, you were there for 400 years and it’s all you all?”
The comment has birthed a petition on Care2 calling for Adidas to drop West as a partner. The rapper moved his Yeezy brand under the athletic wear giant in 2013, and Adidas announced a long-term relationship with West in 2016 with plans to expand apparel and retail stores.
“While Kanye can live safely in his multi-million dollar castle, the rest of black America is continually marginalized and subject to unjust laws and treatment. Some even die because this behavior is so ingrained in our society,” the petition reads. “Kanye West has a right to free speech, and he has the right to spout lies and misinformation and misplaced opinions — but we as consumers have the right to fight back against this type of dangerous propaganda.”
The petition ends with a plea: “Tell the world [Adidas does] not want anything to do with anyone who believes that millions of Africans chose to toil the fields in bondage.”
At press time, the petition had amassed just over 4,000 signatures toward its 10,000 goal.
Meanwhile, West’s latest clothing venture with sportswear company 2XU launches this weekend.
This company’s high-tech fabric engineering will be applied to Yeezy’s Season 6 and Season 7 collections (His wife, Kim Kardashian, has already been sporting the new apparel on her Instagram). Representatives of 2XU had no comment when The Hollywood Reporter reached out about West’s recent social media posts, but they said he would not be doing any personal appearances for the launch.
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