February 10, 2015 at 5:35 pm EDT | by Kevin Naff
Gays should boycott Urban Outfitters
Urban Outfitters, gay news, Washington Blade

Urban Outfitters is selling this tapestry for $69, appropriating an image from the Holocaust.

Urban Outfitters has done it again. As if selling “vintage” Kent State T-shirts spattered with blood wasn’t desperate and crass enough, the retailer is now marketing a product that resembles the uniforms gays were forced to wear in Nazi concentration camps.

The gray-and-white striped tapestry emblazoned with a pink triangle is available in stores for $69.

Mining the Holocaust to make a few bucks is the lowest form of exploitation. Has anyone at Urban Outfitters visited a Holocaust museum? Have they picked up a history book? Are they aware of the horrible fate that befell thousands of gay Nazi victims?

The Anti-Defamation League and Human Rights Campaign have rightly denounced the sick stunt.

“Whether intentional or not, this gray and white striped pattern and pink triangle combination is deeply offensive and should not be mainstreamed into popular culture,” ADL National Director Abraham Foxman, who is a Holocaust survivor, said in a statement. “We urge Urban Outfitters to immediately remove the product.”

HRC’s Fred Sainz echoed ADL’s outrage.

“This retailer has repeatedly embraced the abhorrent, the racist, the bigoted,” Sainz said. “We urge them to reject this strategy, to apologize and keep this kind of offensive merchandise off their shelves.”

LGBT consumers and their allies should boycott Urban Outfitters, whose stores can often be found in the heart of gay-popular enclaves in cities across the country. There’s nothing hip about denigrating the memory of those lost in the Holocaust to sell a T-shirt or tapestry. Shame on Urban Outfitters for this disgusting display of crass commercialism at its absolute worst. And shame on any LGBT (or Jewish) employee of that company who stood by and allowed this product to hit the shelves unchallenged.

Kevin Naff is the editor and a co-owner of the Washington Blade, the nation’s oldest and most acclaimed LGBT news publication, founded in 1969.

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