Gap Apologizes for Using Black Child as Furniture in Ad

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Gap Apologizes for Using Black Child as Furniture in Ad 

April 24, 2016 – This week in corporations-who-might-need-a-black-friend news, nineties clothing manufacturer Gap came under fire for its latest ad campaign featuring a group of child performers called “Le Petite Cirque” with critics labeling the photo used in the campaign as racially insensitive. While the company asserted that the promotional effort was conceived for young girls as a celebration of “creative self-expression” and used the tag line “meet the kids who are proving that girls can do anything,” what actually happened was a black girl got used as an armrest while a bunch of white girls showed off their various talents. To their credit, Gap quickly replaced the image with a different photo that didn’t use the only person of color as a piece of furniture. The response on social media ranged from refusing to buy Gap clothing to defending the company from charges of racism by pointing out an earlier campaign used a similar image.

Per The Root: “One of the white children in the image is resting her arm on the head of the only black child featured, a distinctly unempowering pose that harkened back to an antebellum South in which black children were used as armrests and footstools, and a present where black children are systemically devalued.”

A Gap company spokesperson Debbie Felix said in a statement:
According to the NY Daily News’ covering of the situation, “some (tweeters) disagreed, saying that “people become offended way too easily” and chiding other users, “Don’t make race an issue and it won’t be.”

So was this just a harmless and fun way to inspire young girls or an example of America’s tone-deaf understanding of race? Funny or Offensive? VOTE and COMMENT now…

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