Because I don’t say “I hate it here” enough times per day (my current count is at least 10 so far today alone), Chinese fast-fashion retailer Shein was caught selling Swastika necklaces on their site. And before you ask, no, this is not one of those situations where it kind of looks like a Swastika if you squint and cock your head to the side—they were blatantly selling a product they called “Metal Swastika Pendant Necklace” and it was exactly as the name describes.
Marissa Casey Grossman aka @fashionambitionist on Instagram pointed out the product’s existence in a post to her Instagram feed, writing, “I have zero words” and calling the necklace “ABSOLUTELY disgusting”. Other influential Instagrammers like @influencerstruth and @condeblast blasted Shein for their decision to produce and sell a swastika necklace. The listing is no longer active, and Shein has since apologized.
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HOLY FUCK. I have zero words. I will NEVER be buying from @sheinofficial @shein_us EVER again. This is a company that I’ve bought from so much over the years and to see this is ABSOLUTELY disgusting. I didn’t believe this when I saw it— so did a simple search on their site. And, there it was. @diet_prada “Metal Swastika Pendant Necklace Check out this Metal Swastika Pendant Necklace on Shein and explore more to meet your fashion needs! https://api-shein.shein.com/h5/sharejump/appsharejump?currency=USD&lan=en&id=1385709&share_type=goods&site=iosshus “
Some users pointed out in the comments that the swastika has long been a symbol of good luck and fortune in other cultures, and the Nazis appropriated it. Indeed, a Shein spokesperson told Buzzfeed that the necklace was not a Nazi swastika, but “a Buddhist swastika which has symbolized spirituality and good fortune for more than a thousand years.” They added that the Nazi swastika has a different design and is pointed at an angle. Let’s just hope the people looking to buy that $2.50 necklace knew that—but either way, a global company with over 11 million followers on Instagram should have known better.
This isn’t the first time Shein came under fire for selling religious items, either. The necklace controversy comes less than a week after Shein briefly listed Muslim prayer mats and attempted to sell them as decorative rugs on their site. The mats were taken down almost immediately and the company quickly issued an apology on their Instagram, writing that they “vow to do a much better job in educating ourselves on different cultures, religions, and traditions.” Clearly that promise hasn’t panned out.
Over the weekend, anti-Semitism was in the news when DeSean Jackson, the wide receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles, posted a quote that he attributed to Hitler.
The statements that Jews plan to “extort America” and “achieve world dominations” are illustrations of a harmful stereotype that claims Jews control things like the banks, media, U.S. government, and have plots to take over the world. The stereotype dates back to the 19th century and has been used to scapegoat Jews for complex problems in the world.
After receiving backlash for the post, Jackson issued two apologies. He initially claimed, “Anyone who feels I have hate towards the Jewish community took my post the wrong way. I have no hatred in my heart towards no one!!” Ok, sure, but what exactly was the right way to take that quote?
In a later apology on his Instagram, he wrote, “I unintentionally hurt the Jewish community in the process and for that I am sorry!” He added, “This apology is more than just words – it is a promise to do better. I will fully educate myself and work with local and national organizations to be more informed and make a difference in our community.”
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Despite his claim that he didn’t intend to hurt Jews with the quote, I have to wonder how any quote attributed to Hitler that explicitly references Jews could not, by definition, hurt Jews. I mean, that was kind of Hitler’s whole thing. (Also, for what it’s worth, the quote is probably not even from Hitler, but that’s the least problematic aspect of all of this.)
The Philadelphia Eagles released a statement calling the messages he shared “offensive, harmful, and absolutely appalling” and offering a vague promise to “take appropriate action”.
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) July 7, 2020
Finally, to round out this horrible list, the Trump campaign is selling shirts with a design that is reminiscent of that of the official symbol of the Nazi party. Of course they are. See for yourself:
The President of the United States is campaigning for reelection with a Nazi symbol. Again.
On the left: an official Trump/Pence “America First” tee.
On the right; the Iron Eagle, the official symbol of the Nazi party.
⁰It’s not an accident. Bigotry is their entire brand. pic.twitter.com/mSOBxwf7Wa
— Bend the Arc: Jewish Action (@jewishaction) July 1, 2020
After receiving backlash for it, the Trump campaign issued the biggest non-apology of all time. In an email to Forbes, Trump’s 2020 communications director wrote, “in Democrats’ America, Mount Rushmore glorifies white supremacy and the bald eagle with an American flag is a Nazi symbol. They have lost their minds.”
First of all, the complaints about this shirt have nothing to do with Mount Rushmore, but ok, and nice gaslighting on the anti-Semitism concerns. This comes after Facebook removed Trump campaign ads contained an image of a red upside down triangle, a symbol used by Nazis to identify political prisoners in concentration camps. At this point, it’s hard to believe the Trump campaign does not know exactly what they are doing with these kinds of graphics, and honestly, I’m just surprised Facebook actually did something about Nazis on their platform for once.
The Shein rep told Buzzfeed, “As a multicultural and global brand, we want to apologize profusely to those who are offended, we are sensitive to these issues and want to be very clear that we in no way support or condone racial, cultural and religious prejudice or hostility.” They added, “We are actively working through our internal structure and processes to resolve these issues, including a product review committee to ensure that we respect our diverse community.”
Currently, according to Shein’s own website, products are first conceptualized by designers, and after manufacturing go through a “rigorous” quality assurance” phase. Regardless of whether or not you buy the apology, you should probably stop shopping at Shein anyway. The company has been accused of ripping off indie designers and their clothes fall apart after one wash. It’s also a fast-fashion company, and while they claim to support fair labor practices and sustainability, fast-fashion companies in general have contributed to massive pollution and waste and committed human rights abuses.
Images: Shein; 0ne0fone (2), fashionambitionist / Instagram
In the era of Instagram, people have gotten more and more extra about their wedding events, because everything has to be a competition. Most people flood your feed for months with a proposal, a bachelorette party, a bridal shower, and an entire week of wedding festivities—but what if you did it all at once? That’s what is probably happening right now with influencer (and Goop employee) Marissa Casey Fuchs, who has one hell of an Instagram story right now.
On Tuesday morning, Marissa’s friends played her a prerecorded video from her boyfriend Gabe, talking about how they’ve always known they don’t want a traditional engagement or wedding, that he posted on his own Instagram story. The video is sweet (maybe a little mushy for my icy cold heart, but whatever), and Marissa was losing her sh*t the whole time. From there, her friends took her on a scavenger hunt that has so far lasted over 24 hours.
The first stop on the mystery tour was Flywheel, where Marissa seemed wayyy too excited to take a cycling class. If I thought I was about to get engaged/married, the last thing I would want to do is sweat profusely for an hour, but to each their own. From there, they headed to the AIRE Ancient Baths for massages, and then back to her apartment, where she got her hair and makeup done by Glamsquad and was told to pack a bag.
This combination of frantic running + the bloodcurdling scream at Flywheel are all I’ve thought about in the last day.
The original plan was for Marissa & Co. to take a helicopter to the Hamptons (lol casual), but there was bad weather, so instead they had to take an Uber to Gurney’s, in Montauk. Really slumming it! In case you’re wondering, an Uber from Manhattan to Montauk is approximately $300, so no, it’s not a viable transportation option for most people. While in the car, Marissa clarified that the two women with her on this whole journey are actually her long-time friends, not interns, as some people were guessing.
They got to Gurney’s on Tuesday evening, and Marissa was still totally clueless about what was going on. During this entire fiasco, Gabe has been dropping hints via his Instagram story, but has still yet to appear. People have even started posting with the hashtag #WhereIsGabe, and we all really need to know. Honestly, if I was Marissa, I would be pretty pissed if my man was nowhere to be found during all of this, but clearly she’s down to go with the flow.
This whole journey is beyond extra, and it’s definitely not over. As of Wednesday morning, Marissa was checking out of Gurney’s, and it looks like she’s heading to Hewlett High School on Long Island, where she and Gabe first met. She only found two of the three jewels while she was in the Hamptons, and it looks like the third one is in Hewlett. I have a feeling Gabe might finally make an appearance there too, perhaps with an engagement ring.
Meanwhile, people have been obsessing over following along with her scavenger hunt, and she’s gained over 25,000 followers on Instagram in the last day. I guess all I need to do to get Instagram famous is find a man to plan a viral engagement/wedding scavenger hunt for me—sounds easy enough!
6/19 UPDATE: So the high school thing was a total fake-out, and instead Marissa’s car took her to JFK. She’s currently on a flight to Miami, but she doesn’t know who will meet her there. So far, Gabe still hasn’t made an appearance, and I would be getting pretty impatient if I was Marissa.
6/20 UPDATE: Marissa woke up in Miami after a night of celebrating with her University of Florida friends at Prime 112. Gabe decided to f*ck with his future fiancée’s fragile state even more by posting a video on his IG story for her to open the door of the dining room for his arrival. Spoiler alert: he never arrived and she was not thrilled, but semi-expected he wouldn’t be there. She spent Thursday morning frantically shopping at Zara, The Webster, and Neiman Marcus because she “has no more clothes left” before she jet sets off to Paris (a problem I often have). Not to take the words out of everyone who is watching her stories’ mouth but, WHERE THE F*CK IS GABE??? I’m low-key pissed for her that she’s about to fly cross-country solo. Hopefully someone surprises her and at least escorts her to Paris. She still hasn’t found a good dress to wear for whatever this stunt will culminate in, and her flight is tonight. Drama!!
6/21 UPDATE: Marissa finally settles on a dress from The Webster. After her shopping stunt she just collapses onto the hotel lobby floor because she is super overwhelmed from “the press and so much going on”. Passerby’s don’t seem to think it’s weird that she is sitting on the floor being video taped but that is neither here nor there. We then find Marissa on the beach with her Kim K crying face on because she called her mom and she heard the “European beeping noise” in the background…Ok. To me sirens are sirens but alas the waterworks continue. Marissa takes control of her phone to let her audience know that she is “really, really, eternally grateful for everything Gabe and her friends have done”. I’m glad she reminded us because the shopping and ripping through gifts had us worried for a sec. She confesses that her dream was to run away to the Maldives (casual) with Gabe and just get married. Finally, Marissa is headed to Paris where she seems to be traveling SOLO, which to me is pretty emotionally taxing and just slightly f*cked up. She gets to her hotel room expecting to see her mom, her brothers, or Gabe’s mom in the room but no one is there except for a man name Charles who has been sent to do her hair and makeup. She has a brief moment where she thinks she is going to leave her phone in the hotel room so she can be “present” in the moment. But that is a short lived feat since she realizes she has to go on a 30-40 minute car ride so she def needs her phone, which is good for us so we can continue to update all y’all. Will this end in a proposal? A marriage? Will she find Gabe? Stay tuned…
We know The Atlantic published a piece exposing the fact that a deck about Marissa’s proposal was passed around to brands months before the actual proposal but was Marissa actually involved? Based on her reactions we are going to go with a ‘NO’. I mean, who wants to cry like that on camera? Certainly not us. Marissa works at goop, so it’s not outlandish to think her co-workers created this to help her future fiancé. Regardless, we are still following along for the ride, as you can see below:
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Earlier this week, @fashionambitionist was sent on a viral proposal journey starting in NY and ending in Paris with a pit spot in Miami by her longtime boyfriend @gabriel.grossman. Since then, a deck has been leaked about the entire process and people are accusing Marissa of being in on it. While speculation has been abundant, no one knows the truth and she claims she had no idea. I mean, look at those tears!!!! Who could fake that? (And why would you even want to???) Alas, we are here for the journey so head to our story and link in bio to keep up to date on what has got to be the most over the top proposal we’ve ever seen https://betches.co/2IwAjon #RielLove
But I digress because Gabe just went live to cover the entire proposal where Marissa can barely stand up on her own. Faking? Does not appear likely but who really knows? Gabe also just shot up a casual 3,000 Instagram followers from this stunt…just saying. Once the couple (really just Marissa) is finally able to collect herself, Gabe turns her around to show that their families are waiting for them. She lets out a screech heard around the world and unites with their families. On the way to meet them, Gabe drops a line about a wedding taking place later on today.
It is now 11:58am NY time and we’re watching the wedding festivities unfold thanks to Marissa’s two brother’s Instagram stories. I don’t know where Marissa pulled out this long sleeve cropped top + bridal skirt from but we are here for it.
Make sure to follow along with our streamlined coverage on @betchesbrides. Marissa’s story is a lot to watch right now, but we’re posting all the most important updates, along with some of our own thoughts from Betches HQ.
Images: fashionambitionist (4) / Instagram