Why? Urban Outfitters Gay Holocaust Tapestry
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Why? Urban Outfitters Gay Holocaust Tapestry

Most offensive? Holocaust pajamas just got some competition.

Hannah Dreyfus is a staff writer at the New York Jewish Week. She covers abuses of power in non-profit and religious settings. She heads up the Investigative Journalism Fund, an initiative to fill a gap in investigative and enterprise reporting. Reach her at hannah@jewishweek.org

Really, Urban Outfitters? More Holocaust garb?

A gray and white striped tapestry featuring a pink triangle is causing the latest stir. The Anti-Defamation League, an organization committed to battling anti-Semitism, released a statement last night urging the retail giant to pull the item, which is “eerily reminiscent” of the Holocaust garb that gay male prisoners were forced to wear in Nazi concentration camps.

ADL sent a letter to Urban Outfitters President and CEO Richard A. Hayne expressing concern over the “insensitive design.”

“Whether intentional or not, this gray and white stripped pattern and pink triangle combination is deeply offensive and should not be mainstreamed into popular culture,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director and a Holocaust survivor. “We urge Urban Outfitters to immediately remove the product eerily reminiscent of clothing forced upon the victims of the Holocaust from their stores and online.”

This is not the first time Urban Outfitters has been under the gun for offensive imagery. Most recently, in April 2012 the retailer was castigated for selling a T-shirt appeared to feature a Star of David on its breast pocket, reminiscent of the patch Jews were forced to wear during the Holocaust.

Though Urban Outfitters removed the item, designer Wood Wood claimed that the graphic was not the Star of David and was “no way a reference to Judaism, Nazism or the Holocaust.”

The retail chain has not yet responded to the Jewish Week’s request for comment regarding the tapestry.

hannah@jewishweek.org

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