New Mexico

'Slave cuffs' for sale in Hobbs offend residents

HOBBS, N.M. (KRQE) - A picture of a pair of slave cuffs on sale at an antique mall in Hobbs has a lot of residents talking. From anger to sadness, many feel the cuffs shouldn't have a price tag.

Sitting on a shelf at an antique mall in Hobbs, someone snagged a picture of an African American slave cuff for sale. Engraved on the cuffs are the words, "strong, healthy, African negroes." 

They were being sold for $225.

Diera Davis shared the picture on Facebook. She thought it just wasn't right.

“Since I’m not given information it kind of made me feel like it's just being sold for profit,” Davis said.

Many Hobbs residents KRQE News 13 spoke to Friday also found it offensive.

“I think that so many people got angry because it's a physical manifestation of what we already know,” said Pamela Evans. “It's hard to ignore stuff when it's in your face.”

Hobbs resident Vanessa Herrera said, “I’m offended because I feel like she has no regard for our community promoting in selling stuff like that to make a quick dollar.”

The owners of Nana's Antique Mall said they don't always know what each vendor is selling.

KRQE News 13 asked to speak with the vendor, but the owners said they couldn't do that.

However, they did say that it's part of history, but not all agree that makes it ok to sell it.

“I understand that that is a part of history, but that's a part of history for this day that keeps us divided as separate races and seeing items like that promoted brings a lot of negativity,” Herrera said.

Evans, however, feels it should be used as a catalyst for conversation rather than a catalyst for anger.

“The first thing I thought is that they should take those and show them to the kids, especially kids and their skin looks like mine,” Evans said.

The item has since been removed from the shop. The owners say they doubt it will be back on the shelves.


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