If you recently bought Hallmark blue and silver Hanukkah wrapping paper, you may want to hold off using it and possibly toss it — unless you want to highly offend someone.
A customer shopping at a Walgreens in Northridge, California, discovered a design on the Hallmark wrapping paper that in a Hanukkah display that was upsetting — a pattern of swastikas. Yes, swastikas on wrapping paper being sold for Hanukkah!
Once Hallmark, Inc., based out of Kansas City, Missouri, heard about the complaint, they immediately pulled the wrapping paper from the shelves of Walgreens, according to the New York Post.
According to ABC News, “Cheryl Shapiro and her grandson, 5, were shopping in a Walgreen’s [sic] store on Dec. 4 in Northridge, California, when she stopped to look at some rolls of gift wrap. As the former interior designer gazed at them, her eyes widened at a blue and silver roll, noticing the swastikas engraved in its design.”
“It blew me away! What the h*** was that doing on there?”
The swastika will forever be linked as the symbol for Germany’s Nazis and the Holocaust.
How does something like this happen? Hallmark spokeswoman Julie Elliott says it was a complete oversight. She states that no one at Hallmark realized that the design on the blue and silver paper could be misconstrued as swastikas.
Time reports that in a press release, Elliot goes on to say that the gift wrap was intended for holiday use and wasn’t specifically Hanukkah themed, despite being blue and silver. Elliot said that Hallmark did not intend to offend anyone, and the company will stop making and selling the wrap.
Being Jewish, Shapiro was especially upset by the wrapping paper and phoned her rabbi before approaching anyone at Walgreens, as reported by AOL News. Shapiro did, in fact, decide to inform the staff at Walgreens that she was highly offended and found it hard to believe that this wrapping paper went through inspection and was never caught by quality control.
Shapiro made it very clear to the staff at Walgreens that she did not want it there, as she told ABC News.
“I said, ‘I want it out of the store, but I wanted this to go national. I want this out of the stores nationally.'”
Shapiro reveals that she was very impressed with how quickly Walgreens complied with her request, not only removing it from their shelves at that location immediately, but alerting headquarters as well.
Walgreens spokesman Phil Caruso says they are in the process of removing it from their shelves. They contacted Hallmark, who in turn is asking for a recall on all the rolls of the swastika-looking wrapping paper.
Shapiro has decided not to let this spoil her holiday spirit.
[Photo Credit: NYPost.com]