Urban Outfitters strikes again, this time (hopefully) inadvertently referencing the Holocaust in one of their tapestries.
The tapestry in question features a grey, striped background with an inverted pink triangle, patterned almost exactly like the uniforms gay men were forced to wear in concentration camps. Approximately 100,000 gay men were placed in concentration camps during World War II, abused in unthinkable ways as many were subjected to medical experimentation and mutilation at the hands of Nazi doctors in the name of finding a “cure” for homosexuality.
The Anti-Defamation League requested of Urban Outfitters CEO Richard Hayne that the tapestry be removed from stores and the company’s website.
This isn’t the first time that Urban Outfitters has been under fire for overlooking offensive content. Over the holidays, it sent out a holiday party invitation to its employees, encouraging them to "break out your juttis, kurtas, turbans, saris, lehenga cholis and harem pants." In 2012, the clothing store sold a shirt with a star that looked disturbingly like the ones Jews had to wear during the Holocaust. The store has also sold a V-neck shirt emblazoned with the logo “Eat Less,” a Monopoly game titled “Ghettopoly” filled with racist and classist language and a Kent State sweatshirt that looked as though it had been spattered with blood, which brought to mind the Kent State massacre in the 1970s.
Though still one of the most popular clothing stores for young adults, Urban Outfitters has certainly come under fire for some of the oversights committed by the design team. Somehow, this one company, has offended an absurd number of groups: those suffering from eating disorders, Jews, people of color and Native Americans are just a brief sampling of those who have spoken out against Urban Outfitters.
Do you shop at Urban Outfitters? What are your thoughts on these missteps?