by G. Brown
The kid model-adorable, his pose-fierce, his hoodie–we need to talk about that.
Clothing giant H&M had a net income of $2.34 billion last year in the U.S. alone. They might lose some dollars this year after an advertising blunder that has people ripping it to shreds.
The young Black model’s hoodie says “COOLEST MONKEY IN THE JUNGLE”. New York Times columnist, author Charles M. Blow pretty much summed up the reaction of most people when he spotted the ad…
— Charles M. Blow (@CharlesMBlow) January 8, 2018
The company quickly apologized for using a black model to wear the offensive shirt after cries of “racist” and “unacceptable” spread all over social media peppered with cries of boycott. An H&M spokesperson released a statement saying “We understand that many people are upset about the image. We, who work at H&M, can only agree. We are deeply sorry that the picture was taken, and we also regret the actual print.” The company removed the ad online and is taking the hoodie off its shelves globally.
One Twitter user defended the company saying they’re not racist, just out of touch and tone-death when it comes to issues of race. But some celebs like The Weeknd aren’t buying the tone-deaf rationale and are breaking ties with H&M. Rolling Stone Mag says, “The singer tweeted on Monday, “Woke up this morning shocked and embarrassed by this photo. I’m deeply offended and will not be working with H&M anymore.” According to Rolling Stone, The Weeknd began modeling for ads and collaborating with the brand last year.
Nicki Minaj may have to make a similar decision if she caves to pressure from fans who are calling on her to take a stand and pull her collection from the brand…
Even if you allow that the Swedish company didn’t know that the phrase was offensive to Blacks who have been historically slurred by being compared to monkeys and apes, then the question becomes why are Blacks usually the subject of these racially insensitive ads. These billion dollar companies have plenty of money to hire experts of all races and genders to prevent ‘mistakes’ like this. Seems like a racially balanced team would be a better use of their money instead of losing money over blunders like this.