Spanish retail giant Zara has been in damage-control mode this morning, following criticism that its striped “sheriff” T-shirts are eerily similar to the outfits prisoners were made to wear during the Holocaust.
A writer from +972 magazine was the first to point out the resemblance—stripes and a sheriff’s badge that looks a lot like a Star of David—and question the design, which was available in the company’s online stores.
The company was quick to respond, pulling the item and profusely apologizing in response to the scores of tweets condemning the shirt—which is not entirely unlike the uniform worn by the title character in John Boyne’s acclaimed novel (and its subsequent film adaptation) The Boy in the Striped Pajamas.
“We honestly apologize, it was inspired by the sheriff’s stars from the Classic Western films and is no longer in our stores,” wrote the company.
It’s not the first time Zara has come under fire for anti-Semitic designs. In 2007, the company was forced to withdraw a handbag that featured a swastika.