Under Armour Pulls “Band Of Ballers” Shirt Amid Criticism That It Echoes Iwo Jima Imagery

underarmourUnder Armour is apologizing and promising to stop selling a T-shirt dubbed “Band of Ballers” after complaints that its image of basketball players raising a hoop closely mirrored the style of the Marine Corps War Memorial. That memorial is based on a famous photograph taken of soldiers raising a U.S. flag on the Japanese island of Iwo Jima during World War II.

Complaints online accused the company of being disrespectful to the military, Bloomberg reports, prompting Under Armour to apologize over the weekend.

“We deeply regret and apologize that a T-shirt that was not reflective of our values in honoring and supporting our country’s heroes went on sale,” the company said in a statement. “We have taken immediate action to remove it from retail and will take great measures to ensure this does not happen again.”

To rub salt in the wound, Under Armour has maintained a relationship with military groups, including the Wounded Warrior project.

“Supporting those who serve our country has been part of our brand’s DNA since the very beginning,” the company said.

Under Armour isn’t the first company to raise objections over questionable merchandise (and it likely won’t be the last): Just recently, Urban Outfitters came under fire for selling a tapestry that looks like a concentration camp uniform in February, and drew criticism last year for selling a blood-spattered Kent State sweatshirt.

Zara also pulled a shirt last year that was likened to a concentration camp uniform, and H&M stopped selling a shirt that featured a skull emblazoned on a Star of David.

Under Armour Pulls ‘Band of Ballers’ Shirt After Outcry [Bloomberg]

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