Popular home goods store Bed, Bath & Beyond has pulled what are being referred to as "blackface pumpkins" from their shelves, following complaints that the items display a racist stereotype. According to TooFab, the black jack-o-lanterns first went viral after a small New York state law firm placed them amongst their Halloween decorations. NAACP regional director, Wilber Aldridgewhich, spoke out about the decorations, saying that they showed "an extreme lack of sensitivity."
"By now I would believe everyone [would] know that anything in Black face is offensive — Equally as offensive is that a retail store would have such an item in [their] inventory for general purchase," Aldridge added.
"It wasn't about the pumpkin itself, but what was done to the pumpkin. When you proceed to put the white eyes and the white mouth, now you have crossed the line because it then goes into having blackface," Aldridge continued, per News 12.
Objections first arose in Nyack, New York, where the pumpkins were part of a Halloween display at a law firm.
Local NAACP director Wilbur Aldridge said they showed “an extreme lack of sensitivity.” https://t.co/KLieNLWEie— WTVG 13abc (@13abc) October 24, 2019
Mary Marzolla, a partner at the law firm, confirmed that the business had removed the pumpkins, explaining, "We understand that someone complained about them and so once we got word of that we immediately took them down."
"We represent people of all colors and faiths, and we would never do anything to exclude anyone from any community," she added, with her partner Alak Shah adding, "It's just nothing I take offense to personally, but since it did offend someone we took proactive steps to take it down."
Was looking up stock shit and bed bath and beyond had to take down painted pumpkins after people complained to them about the pumpkins being blackface... I can’t make this up 😭😭 pic.twitter.com/67jGruxKze— 💧💧💧 (@SlurRty) October 24, 2019
The move has led to quite a lot of discussion on social media, with many agreeing that taking down the pumpkins was the right thing to do, but others feeling as if this was a case of some people being overly "sensitive."
"I think more so the problem is that they were painted with white, it looks more like blackface. See the actual pic in question. but yeah, it's just pumpkins.. But honestly I don't think it's my place to say either way," one Twitter user commented.
I thought removing black pumpkins from bed bath and beyond were wrong until I saw these pictures. Totally looks like blackface . Somebody had to know that. pic.twitter.com/txN7jDDVgM— Micah Ross (@micahross) October 25, 2019
At this time, Bed, Bath & Beyond has stated that they are makinf sure the items are removed from all stores where they were being sold.
Photo Credit: KETK, News 12 / YouTube0comments