An American company, KA Designs, is selling T-shirts and sweatshirts with rainbow-colored swastikas on them, re-branding the emblem of hatred as a “symbol of love and peace.”
The company, selling through a San Francisco, California-based website called “Teespring,”has essentially attempted to rebrand the hate out of the swastika using the colors of the LGBT movement.
The T-shirts that initially made headlines in the news appear to have been removed from the website. But the screenshots remain.
The Teespring website features clothing with the swastika and the words, “Zen,” Love,” and “Peace” written on them in rainbow, black and white. It also features apparel with a rainbow-colored United States and the swastika in the “no” symbol or “prohibition” sign, titled, “Love and Peace with Anti Swastika.” Another symbol is the word “LOVE” strewn across a rainbow and the same “anti-swastika” in the middle.
The site also features a t-shirt with the heraldic eagle, also known as the “imperial eagle,” with a swastika in the middle in black and red. The t-shirt appears to be a salute to the Nazi Party.
Prices for the items range between $20 and $35.
A video promoting the marketing effort says:
This is a Swastika. It’s 5000 years old. It’s a symbol of peace. It’s a symbol of love. It’s a symbol of infinity. It’s a symbol of life. But one day Nazism. They took the Swastika, rotated it by 45 degrees, and turned it into hatred, and turned it into fear, and turned it into war, and turned it into racism, and turned it into power. They stigmatized the Swastika forever. They won. They limited our freedom. Or maybe not? The Swastika is coming back together with peace, together with love, together with respect, together with freedom.
Before it was used as a symbol by the Nazis and Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich, the swastika (svastika) — which means “good fortune” or “well being” in Sanskrit — was, and still is, a sacred symbol in India among Hindus, Buddhists and Jains. The German word for swastika is Hakenkreuz.
However, the swastika remains a painful symbol and reminder of the Holocaust for Jews, as well as a mark of hatred in general.
Arsen Ostrovsky, the executive director of the Israeli-Jewish Congress, wrote on Facebook Sunday that the attempt at rebranding the swastika was “obscene and disgusting.” In an interview with the Jerusalem Post, Ostrosky said, “It may have been a symbol of peace. That most certainly is not what it is primarily associated with today.” He reportedly went on to say, “This is not only highly naïve but grossly offensive.
“What next, using ISIS symbol to promote gender equality?”