Kids’ Halloween costume sparks outrage
A HALLOWEEN costume of Holocaust victim Anne Frank has sparked furious outrage - prompting several retailers to stop selling the item.
Originally sold on the website Halloweencostumes.com, the insensitive kids' costume is made up of a green beret, a blue coat and a brown satchel with a name tag on it like the kind evacuee children wore during World War II, reports The Sun.
The same costume is available to buy in Australia, where it is retailing for $28.95 on the website Smiffys Australia Costumes.
It is described as a "World War II Evacuee Girl Costume."
Horrified Twitter users have shared their fury and disgust at such a costume being marketed, with one writing that they were "totally speechless".
Anne Frank was just 15 years old when she was killed in the Holocaust, along with her sister Margot and mother Edith.
She gained widespread admiration after her death when her father Otto published her diaries - written while the family hid from the Nazis in a secret annex.
The original description of the costume says children wearing the outfit can "play the role of a World War Two hero".
THE WORLD IS A MERRY CARNIVAL OF HORROR https://t.co/bVED1TDZni— Dana Schwartz (@DanaSchwartzzz) October 16, 2017
The popular website Halloween Costumes is selling an Anne Frank costume for kids. WTF? pic.twitter.com/cqKQ9UlIge— Daniel Arenson (@DanielArenson) October 15, 2017
Why is there even a damn Anne Frank Halloween costume to begin with? Who thought that was a good idea?— Richard S (@RickySmelser) October 17, 2017
Carlos Galindo-Elvira, the regional director of the US Anti-Defamation League, tweeted that Anne's memory should not be trivialised.
A PR representative for HalloweenCostumes, Ross Walker Smith, responded to criticism online, writing: "We sell costumes not only for Halloween, but for many uses outside of the Halloween season, such as school projects and plays."
The Anne Frank Centre for Mutual Respect, which support Anne's legacy, told TMZ that the outfit was "offensive" and "trivialises Anne's suffering and the suffering of millions during the Holocaust.
The company has also issued a statement apologising for any offence the costume has caused.
"We would like to apologise for any offence this has caused. Due to the feedback from our customers and the public, which we take very seriously, we have elected to stop selling this costume immediately," the statement read. "Again, we apologise for this mistake in judgment."
It's not the first time retailers have been forced to pull insensitive Halloween costumes.
Earlier this month, Amazon removed 'sexy' Halloween costumes including a French Maid outfit for girls as young as five from their website, after a backlash from child safety campaigners.
Some of the most insensitive Halloween costumiers ever include two young women dressed as the Twin Towers and a group of students who blacked out their faces to pose as the Jamaican bobsleigh team from the film Cool Runnings.
Celebrities have also copped flack over the years for their poor choice in costumes.
Last year actress Hilary Duff and her boyfriend were criticised for dressing as a pilgrim and Native American, while in 2013 Julianne Hough was attacked for doing blackface when she dressed up as Orange is the New Black character Crazy Eyes.
Comedian Bill Maher caused upset in 2006 when he dressed as the late Steve Irwin, wearing a bloody khaki shirt and stingray barb coming out of his chest. He wore the costume less than two months after Irwin passed away.
Part of this story appeared originally in The Sun.