Retailers Realize Osama Bin Laden Costume Might Be Offensive, Stop Selling It

(Sikh Coalition)

(Sikh Coalition)

We have to wonder whether anyone pays attention at all to the Halloween costumes offered at major retailers. The “naughty leopard” incident was weird, but how is it even remotely okay to sell Osama bin Laden costumes to the public? After the Sikh Coalition pointed this out, so far Walmart, Amazon, Sears, and Rite Aid have pulled the outfit from their shelves.

Amazon’s description in the catalog actually referred to it as an Osama costume. What the Sikh Coalition found especially problematic was Rite Aid’s listing of it as a “Turban Beard Adult Halloween Instant Costume.” Baptized Sikh men, who wear turbans and grow long beards, have been the target of ignorant attacks and profiled as terrorists. Just last week, a Sikh Columbia University professor was beaten. His assailants called him a “terrorist” and said, “Get Osama!”

In their press release, the Sikh Coalition compared the product to a Hitler costume, and listed the different categories of people who this costume insults.

Apart from promoting stereotypes about turbans and beards that lead to violence against Sikhs and other minorities, these costumes insult those who lost loved ones during the 9/11 attacks and insult American troops who sacrificed their lives in our nation’s war against Al Qaeda.

Walmart says that it never offered the costume in retail stores, but only online.

Major Retailers Remove “Turban and Beard” Costume [Sikh Coalition]