Kanye West has been accused of “disrespecting Islam” with the names of his new Yeezy Boost sneakers.
Adidas unveiled the new line of shoes earlier this week: the Yeezy Boost 350 V2 Israfil and Yeezy Boost 350 V2 Asriel, which are named after the Islamic angels of music (Israfil) and death (Asriel).
Israfil is one of four archangels in Islam. He is usually depicted with a horn, which he will blow on Qiyamah – or the day of judgement.
Asriel is Islam’s archangel of death and is said to transport the souls of the deceased after they have passed on.
YEEZY BOOST 350 V2 ISRAFIL. AVAILABLE AUGUST 22 IN ASIA PACIFIC, EUROPE AND NORTH AMERICA AT https://t.co/SNOmpVaWg8, ON THE ADIDAS APP IN SELECT COUNTRIES, AND IN SELECT ADIDAS STORES. pic.twitter.com/TqUvKf2ion
— adidas Originals (@adidasoriginals) August 17, 2020
The announcement was met with a lot of criticism from Muslims who have taken to social media to criticise the ‘Jesus Walks’ rapper and Adidas for “making a mockery of Islam.”
“Very disrespectful,” one Twitter user wrote. “Adidas is disrespecting Islam. Israfil is one of the four angels in Islam. Shame on @adidasoriginals and @kanyewest”
Another wrote: “Dear @Adidas I am gonna STOP buying and using your products if those Kanye West’s newest shoes’ names aren’t changed because it IT DOES NOT RESPECT Islam.”
“Kanye West and Adidas making mockery of Islam…..,” a third wrote.
— Tariqul Islam Jewel (@TariqulJewel) August 22, 2020
— saymyname (@SeptianaTri3) August 23, 2020
Kanye West and Adidas making mockery of Islam….. pic.twitter.com/LDHlJEiQ54
— Abdullah kun (@bin_zeshan) August 23, 2020
A petition has been started calling for Adidas to change the name of the shoes.
“It has came to the attention of the Global Muslim community that Adidas has allowed the production of a shoe that is named after an archangel in Islam,” the petition reads.
“Until further notice, we request all Muslims to boycott adiddas products, cease all sale of adidas products by any Muslim owned 3rd party retail shops until adidas ceases the production of this commodity.”
You can sign the petition here.
One person criticising the shoes wrote: “#KanyeWest new shoe named ‘Israfil’ In #Islam, Israfil is known to be the angel that will blow a trumpet to mark the ultimate end of the world. Naming a shoe after a significant Angel of God, in the Islamic religion, is highly disrespectful.”
Latest controversy#KanyeWest new shoe named 'Israfil'
In #Islam, Israfil is known to be the angel that will blow a trumpet to mark the ultimate end of the world.
Naming a shoe after a significant Angel of God, in the Islamic religion, is highly disrespectful.@MuslimAdvocates pic.twitter.com/D2s8qhkGwe
— Azra_H (@azra_hhh) August 19, 2020
@kanyewest named his shoes Israfil & Azrael after angels in Islam. this is disrespectful & ignorant to the significance behind the names. obv he was trying to capitalize off Muslim consumers but failed bc he didn't do research. certain things are off limits. this is one of them.
— Sofia (@sofia__haq) August 23, 2020
See more responses to the announcement of Kanye West’s new shoes below:
Out of all the names Kanye West | Adidas decided to use such a high rank angel name in our religion Islam "Israfil" https://t.co/yMMfhNcaAn
— Abdukadir Ugas (@AbdulkadirUgas) August 22, 2020
Fu** that fool and his whole line https://t.co/neTTrrL4BJ
— L0Ki (@cyphaloki) August 23, 2020
@kanyewest @theyeezymafia @adidas shame on you for using the name of Islam's four archangels for a shoe name. That's cultural appropriation and it is wrong and upsetting to our Muslim community. Change the shoe name. #culturalappropriation
— Sandra (@sanbrown76) August 23, 2020
— Waqas Saeed (WAX) (@waqas_bey) August 18, 2020
The rapper’s 2020 presidential campaign, under the banner of The Birthday Party, has hit several snags since he announced it earlier this year, including missing deadlines to get his name on the ballot in numerous states.
After the news that West had been barred from appearing on the ballot in Wisconsin because he filed his paperwork late, a further two states have returned verdicts on whether he can be named on the voting slip in November.