Anti-Defamation League rips Urban Outfitters for Star of David look-alike shirt

By Alex Dickinson Monday, April 23, 2012

The $100 T-shirt was called “extremely distasteful and offensive.”

Urban Outfitters intends to ride out the controversy over its newest garment — a T-shirt imprinted with a symbol that resembles a Star of David, which Jews had to wear in Nazi Europe.

The trendy fashion chain is under fire from the Anti-Defamation League for its $100 “Wood Wood Kellog Tee” because the patch on the left breast pocket looks like the yellow Star of David, which Adolf Hitler used to mark Jews for persecution and extermination during World War II. Six million Jews died in the Holocaust.

“We find this use of symbolism to be extremely distasteful and offensive and are outraged that your company would make this product available to your customers,” league regional director Barry Morrison wrote to Urban Outfitters CEO Richard Hayne.

The league demanded Urban Outfitters stop selling the shirt and issue an apology for its insensitivity. The shirt was still for sale on the chain’s website last night. Urban Outfitters did not return requests from The Daily for comment.

In his letter, released Thursday on Holocaust Remembrance Day, Morrison called the T-shirt “a new low” for Urban Outfitters. He wrote: “The League has communicated with Urban Outfitters on numerous occasions over the years regarding a variety of projects that have, ‘tread on the feelings and reinforced stereotypes of various groups — Christians, blacks, and Irish, Mexican, and Jewish-Americans … the list goes on’ .”

Last month, Rep. Joseph Crowley, D-N.Y., criticized the chain for a range of Irish-themed clothing with such slogans as “Kiss Me I’m Drunk, Or Irish, Or Whatever” and “Irish I Were Drunk.” One figure of a person vomiting
came with the slogan: “Irish yoga.

The Navajo Nation sued Urban Outfitters this year over clothing and accessories that resemble traditional garb.

What's next? Zyklon B shower gel?