If you’re a khaki-wearing, Detroit Redwings sporting, and tiki torch bearing white nationalist, the brands want you to know in no uncertain terms that they don’t want your support.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock the size of Chicago, you are probably aware of the horrific event in Charlottesville last weekend where hundreds of white nationalist, neo-Nazi and Ku Klux Klan idiots descended upon the University of Virginia’s campus performing classic hits including, “Jews will not replace us” and “Blood and soil.”
The so-called peaceful march, planned to protest the taking down of a Robert E. Lee statue, was sponsored by TIKI, Khakis, The Detroit Redwings, Go Daddy and New Balance.
Pump the brakes!
Shocked and horrified, corporations have been quick to separate themselves from the hate-mongers. Twitter was lightning fast to pick up on the irony of the so-called defenders of America using Polynesian bamboo torches.
“I like it when racists march with tiki torches, in clothes & shoes made by Asians. You can hate us but you can’t escape us boo ;)”
“having tiki torches at your nazi rally is definitive proof the white race is the best…at stealing from other cultures”
A bunch of white guys running around screaming “White Power” while carrying Polynesian tiki torches… #Charlottesville
“These are legit scary assholes, but they’d be scarier if they didn’t use citronella tiki torches they bought from Lowes.”
In a statement, the brand once solely associated with backyard barbecues and not cross-burnings, said, “TIKI Brand is not associated in any way with the events that took place in Charlottesville and are deeply saddened and disappointed,” the company wrote Saturday on its Facebook page.
“We do not support their message or the use of our products in this way.”
Detroit Red Wings not fans.
The torches did shine some light on another brand as many of the “Unite the Right” marchers carried signs of the Detroit Red Wings logo, one of the most popular in the NHL. Truth be told, the logo was slightly altered, as is most of their perceptions, to incorporate the always popular Nazi symbol, reported CNN.
Using the kind of defense the Red Wings have come to be known for, the hockey club took to social media to post a sharp statement, “The Detroit Red Wings vehemently disagree with and are not associated in any way” with the Charlottesville rally, which was organized to oppose the removal of a statue depicting Confederate General Robert E. Lee.
“The Red Wings believe that hockey is for everyone and we celebrate the diversity of our fan base and our nation,” the team statement said. “We are exploring every possible legal action as it pertains to the misuse of our logo in this disturbing demonstration.”
According to CNN, The NHL also weighed in, writing in a statement that the organization is “obviously outraged by the irresponsible and improper use of our intellectual property” at the rally.
“This specific use is directly contrary to the value of inclusiveness that our League prioritizes and champions,” the league said, adding that it would take “immediate” steps to reclaim the logo and “vigorously pursue other remedies.”
The neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer was put on notice by GoDaddy, the Web hosting company that houses its domain. In a statement to The Washington Post, GoDaddy said that a post on the website disparaging Heather Heyer, the 32-year-old woman killed Saturday during the Charlottesville rally, could “incite more violence,” which violated its terms of service.
Go Daddy says, “be gone”
According to a Washington Post article, neo-Nazi website, the Daily Stormer, was put on notice Sunday night by GoDaddy, the web hosting company that houses its domain.
In a statement to The Washington Post, GoDaddy said that a post on the website disparaging Heather Heyer, the 32-year-old woman killed Saturday during the Charlottesville rally, could “incite more violence,” which violated its terms of service.
Heyer was among the hundreds who converged on Charlottesville to counter protest the white supremacist rally. She died, according to police, after James Alex Fields Jr., 20, of Ohio, drove his vehicle into a crowd of people.
Fields Jr. has been charged with one count of second-degree murder, three counts of malicious wounding and another count related to the hit-and-run, authorities said.
GoDaddy, after months of criticism for giving the anti-Semitic website a platform for hate speech, said it had given the Daily Stormer 24 hours to move the domain to another provider before it canceled service.
Google soon followed GoDaddy’s lead.
New Balance not proud
And just last month, the chairman of the Fred Perry fashion label, a British company founded by the champion tennis player in 1952, watched helplessly as the self-described “Western chauvinist” Proud Boys appeared in Canada wearing black Fred Perry polo shirts trimmed in yellow stripes.
The Proud Boys espouse “anti-political correctness, anti-racial guilt” agenda in “an age of globalism and multiculturalism.”
When the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. asked Fred Perry Chairman John Flynn about the far-right group’s obsession with the brand, he offered a history lesson in the company’s diverse roots.
“It is a shame that we have to even answer the question,” he said.
Follow Colin Costello on Twitter @colincostello10.