Etsy, the popular online store for handmade and classic products, announced Tuesday that it was banning the sale of all products bearing the logo of the Washington Redskins. A blog post announcing the new policy said the logo is “offensive, disparaging, and racist.” However, the store has plenty of other products being sold that fall in that category as well including Nazi Swastika and other products plus blackface and more.
“Today we seek to balance two principles that are critically important to us: freedom of speech and protection from discrimination,” Etsy’s Bonnie Broeren wrote in the post explaining the new policy. “Freedom of speech and expression is important to us because we are a community of artists, artisans, and curators of all backgrounds, aesthetics, and viewpoints. If you search our site, you will see a wide variety of items testifying to our diversity and our seemingly limitless creativity.”
She later stated, “[I]t has long been against our policies to allow content on our site that demeans people based upon race, ethnicity, religion, gender, gender identity, disability, or sexual orientation.”
She then announced, “Native American groups have consistently advocated and litigated that the term “redskin(s)” is disparaging and damaging to Native Americans. Therefore, it will no longer be permitted in our marketplace.”
Etsy sellers will still be able to sell items featuring Washington name and colors.The “Redskins” name and logo will no longer be allowed though.
The decision was met with good bit of mockery in the social media sphere, as Twitchy picked up. Individuals spotted Nazi Swastikas, merchandise that carries disparaging terms for homosexuals and blacks among others. Granted, some of the Nazi merchandise is vintage World War II collectibles, Seinfeld jokes, or Nazi zombie meme. However, that doesn’t explain away some of the other items spotted.
— Turk Foles (@sHELLshoQ) September 10, 2014
A guitar pick is definitely not a vintage item. It’s also hard to explain the following.
We also found this item listed on Etsy. It’s definitely not a vintage collectible.
The following was also spotted. It shows that offensive terminology is not limited to just racial groups but sexual orientation too.
The Washington Redskins logo has been in the news frequently due to Native American activists suing to have the logo removed. The United States Patent and Trademark Office has cancelled the team’s trademarks. Additionally, sports commentators from major networks have vowed never to say “Redskins” on air and some newspapers have vowed not to reprint the word. Despite all of this, team owner Daniel Snyder has remained adamant that he is not changing the name and enlisted the aid of Native Americans that do not find the term to be offensive to assist with a media campaign.
What do you of Etsy’s policy change? Does it need to take a broader look what people are selling through the site if they are going to ban the Redskins name and logo? Sound off in the comments below.
[Images via Getty Images, Etsy]