Zara, a Spanish fashion house, released a tee-shirt designed for teens that it said was modeled on Old West Sheriff’s. But the design, a gold star on a striped blue shirt raised protests instead for evoking visions of a Nazi death camp.
During World War II, the Nazi regime imprisoned and systematically killed millions of Jews, gypsies, political opponents and others in concentration camps.
Prisoners wore blue and white vertical striped uniforms, while those for Jews included a gold star. The Zara top has horizontal stripes and a large six-pointed yellow star on the right breast.
The design was inspired by Hollywood Old West films. The star is patterned after a classic sheriff’s badge. In fact, the design is even called “The Sheriff,” according to the company.
— Fashion Soul ~nyc~ (@JessieM5) August 27, 2014
But an uproar ensued on Twitter because critics saw far more ominous symbolism in the design.
The firm was charged with everything from “anti-semitism” to cultural insensitivity, according to The New York Times.
“The mentioned T-shirt is no longer on sale in our stores,” the company said in a statement. “The design of the T-shirt was only inspired by the sheriff’s stars from the Classic Western films, as the claim of the T-shirt says.”
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