Numerous celebrities have spoken out in outrage and cut ties with H&M including G-Eazy, LeBron James, and Diddy.
Earlier this week, Salute Magazine covered the latest H&M controversy surrounding their most recent campaign image. The image features a beautiful black male model wearing a sweater that says, “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle.” As expected the backlash was immediate, many took to Twitter to share their discontent with the brand. Not only was the general public outraged, but celebrities were as well.
The outrage was so grand that H&M issued an apologetic email to media relations with the following statement:
“We sincerely apologize for offending people with this image of a printed hooded top. The image has been removed from all online channels and the product will not be for sale in the United States. We believe in diversity and inclusion in all that we do and will be reviewing all our internal policies accordingly to avoid any future issues.”
Following their apology, H&M took down the offensive image from their website and social media account. In spite of the brand’s attempts to regain control over their insensitive mistake, the public continues to be disappointed and many customers have gone as far as stating they will no longer purchase from the label.
Despite the apology, celebrities all over the world joined forces and began sharing a new altered image featuring the same little boy, but with a golden crown and a new empowering statement on the sweatshirt.
The Weeknd who recently launched his second collaboration with H&M was one of the very first celebrities to announce cutting ties with the brand on Twitter. He tweeted “woke up this morning shocked and embarrassed by this photo. I’m deeply offended and will not be working with @hm anymore…”
Not long after that NBA superstar LeBron James joined the uproar and uploaded the altered image of the young boy with a caption that says “H&M, you got us all wrong! And we ain’t going for it! Straight up! Enough about y’all and more of what I see when I look at this photo. I see a Young King!! The ruler of the world, an untouchable Force that can never be denied!”
Rapper and fashion mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs shared the young boy’s altered photo and voiced his opinion as well, “Put some respect on it!! When you look at us, make sure you see royalty and supernatural God-sent glory!! Anything else is disrespectful” he wrote.
Subsequently earlier this month it was announced that G-Eazy was working on a brand-new collection with H&M. The collection was due to drop March 1st, but it is safe to say that will no longer be the case. In his latest Instagram post he severed all ties with H&M with a caption that reads as follows:
“Over the past months I was genuinely excited about launching my upcoming line and collaboration with H&M, unfortunately, after seeing the disturbing image yesterday, my excitement over our global campaign quickly evaporated, and I’ve decided at this time our partnership needs to end. Whether an oblivious oversight or not, it’s truly sad and disturbing that in 2018, something so racially and culturally insensitive could pass by the eyes of so many (stylist, photographer, creative and marketing teams) and be deemed acceptable.”
It is safe to say that H&M has dropped the ball with their insensitivity towards this matter.
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