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Keep Calm and ....RAPE ME.....WTF

Posted by on Mar. 4, 2013 at 2:14 PM
  • 40 Replies

 

Critics Demand Amazon Donation for Selling T-Shirts that Promote Abuse

Amazon UK
Retail giant Amazon was asked to make a "substantial donation" to a woman's refuge on Saturday night after its UK website offered T-shirts for sale promoting rape and violence against women. The T-shirts, which were also manufactured and sold in the U.S., included slogans were spun off the phrase, "Keep Calm and Carry On", a famous British propaganda slogan and included shirts that read: "Keep Calm and Hit Her", "Keep Calm and Rape a Lot" and "Keep Calm and Rape Them" for $23–$26.

By mid-morning Saturday, Amazon had received hundreds of angry complaints and removed the pages, but Harriet Harman, the shadow Culture Secretary who called on Amazon to make the donation, told The Independent that the decision to sell the merchandise was "absolutely outrageous" and that "Domestic violence and sex offenses are not something people should make money out of. [Amazon's] supposed to be a public company. My suggestion is they give all profits they made from it to a women's refuge." She also added that Amazon could make a "substantial donation" to End Violence Against Women and Women's Aid.

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On Saturday, Michael Fowler, the founder of Solid Gold Bomb, the Melbourne, Australia based company that produces the T-shirts in both the United States and Oxford, issued an apology on his company's website that in part read:

"No words can express how I feel about what has occurred and in no way do I condone or promote this serious issue. I will offer a more in depth explanation of cause to explain what and how this occurred. Both myself and our company and it's associated Solid Gold Bomb brand have never had any intention of the spread of violent slogans or even poor taste humor t-shirts. This was a computer error of my creation and I accept my responsibility in the matter."

Fowler further explained that the shirts were merely a result of a computer glitch, saying they were created by an “automated process” that “relied on both computer based dictionaries and online educational resources ie. verb lists” to generate a parody of “Keep Calm.”

“These were subsequently scripted to position themselves on t-shirts and the associated product data was derived simply from the product name and the 16 word combinations like ‘On’ and ‘Off’ and ‘Him’ or ‘Her’ and so forth,” wrote Fowler. “Near all of these combinations either work or don’t work and are certainly non-offensive such as ‘Dream On’ and ‘Dance Off’ and so forth.”

He also said "These items sat online and on non-indexed servers for the last year and myself and our company had no idea of the issue" and that “As a father, husband, brother and son, I would never promote such product in our company and it was clear to see this when looking across the millions of t-shirts that we offer or can produce on demand. Had these items ever sold, we would have immediately pulled the series and are doing so on our own and Amazon channels worldwide.”

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The company may have also had "no idea" that they sold other T-shirts that read: "Keep Calm and Knife Her," "Keep Calm and Choke Her," and "Keep Calm and Grope On."

Amazon.com did not return Shine's calls for comment but an Amazon UK spokesperson said that the "Keep Calm and Hit Her" T-shirts were "not available for sale." In addition, none of the other shirts in question were available by Sunday afternoon.

Solid Gold Bomb had also removed its Facebook and Twitter accounts but on Sunday a new page on Facebook called "Solid Gold Bomb Sucks" with an Amazon logo serving as its profile picture surfaced with 33 likes so far and calls for the public to boycott the brand.

Other critics are taking to Amazon's website and Twitter account posting messages such as "Advocating violence against women is unacceptable. This product perpetuates sexism and is absolutely despicable." The former labor deputy leader John Prescott tweeted: "First Amazon avoids paying UK tax. Now they're making money from domestic violence." And Sophie Bennett, the campaigns and policy officer for human rights organization Object said: "These T-shirts are not harmless fun. The are dangerous and intimidating. In promoting rape and normalizing abuse, they create a context in which violence against women is acceptable."

Whether Amazon will make things (somewhat) right with a donation remains to be seen.

by on Mar. 4, 2013 at 2:14 PM
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Replies (1-10):
norahsmommy
by Bronze Member on Mar. 4, 2013 at 2:17 PM
3 moms liked this
Wth? I'm rarely offended by stupid shirts/ slogans but this is just awful.
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.Lovemythree.
by on Mar. 4, 2013 at 2:23 PM
Eww
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mikiemom
by Ruby Member on Mar. 4, 2013 at 2:24 PM
1 mom liked this

WTF is wrong with people. Sigh.

IhaveHisjoy
by Silver Member on Mar. 4, 2013 at 2:25 PM

 Amazon..a hero in one threat..Utter crap in another.

coolmommy2x
by Gold Member on Mar. 4, 2013 at 2:37 PM

 First let me say, I do NOT condone these shirts at all.

But...I know first hand how a tshirt can be created and "slip through cracks" such as these.  Last summer I bought DS a Phillies t-shirt.  He wore it a few times and then came to me and asked if I knew Phillies was spelled wrong when I bought the shirt.  Of course, I never noticed but he did.  I emailed the manufacturer and let them know.  They told me to return the shirt to where I purchased it for a full refund.  Huh?  Did they not read the part or see the picture I attached showing they spelled a major league baseball team's name incorrectly?

So I emailed the Phillies to let them know that their name was on a bunch of shirts spelled incorrectly and the manufacturer was OK with it.  They emailed me back right away and asked for a picture which I sent.  Long story short, the manufacturer sent me a new shirt (which I never asked for a replacement, just wanted to let them know) and the Phillies rep said he was doing something about it.  My friend found the misspelled shirts on cbssports.com too.  We were at a game and saw someone wearing a misspelled shirt.

Here's the shirt:

Philles should be Phillies.  So...when Amazon says no one knew or realized the error, although hard to believe, it IS possible.  Hopefully this will make them be more careful in the future and do the right thing.

sweet-a-kins
by Emerald Member on Mar. 4, 2013 at 3:18 PM

 The T-shirts, which were also manufactured and sold in the U.S., included slogans were spun off the phrase, "Keep Calm and Carry On", a famous British propaganda slogan and included shirts that read:

 "Keep Calm and Hit Her",

 

So disgusting

 "Keep Calm and Rape a Lot" and

 "Keep Calm and Rape Them"

for $23–$26.

charleyd68
by Platinum Member on Mar. 4, 2013 at 3:26 PM
1 mom liked this

((shaking head,backing away))

LindaClement
by Thatwoman on Mar. 4, 2013 at 3:40 PM

Nice advertisement for the company in questions...

DestinyHLewis
by Destiny on Mar. 4, 2013 at 3:45 PM

Just disgusting. I'd be more than willing to throw pigs blood all over any asshats free speech rights who dared to cross my path in this trash. 

Mommy_of_Riley
by Jes on Mar. 4, 2013 at 3:54 PM
Oh geez...

Someone slipped up on this one. :-/
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