Radley Balko wrote a letter to the Target Corporation about its new clothing line featuring Soviet kitsch:
Which brings me to the reason I write this letter. This past weekend, I was at your store to pick up a few household items. As I was passing by the men's section, I was alarmed to see a prominent display of clothing emblazoned with former Soviet Union imagery. I couldn't help but note the irony: There, amid the wonderfully functioning example of capitalism that is your store, were kitschy, trendy (I guess), and ultimately offensive items celebrating the brutal, oppressive, and murderous regime that was Soviet communism â€“ an ideology that had no room for the peaceful commerce and voluntary transactions that happen hundreds of times per day in that store.
I don't mean to condescend, but I believe the person who does the ordering for your menswear department needs a lesson in world history. I'm sure neither Target nor any other major retailer would ever consider setting aside retail space for t-shirts advertising the Nazi insignia, even if done in a "retro" or kitschy fashion. And rightly so. The swastika has come to symbolize the six million Jews murdered by Adolph Hitler and the Nazi party last century (Hitler is ultimately responsible for more than twenty million deaths).
Let's hope we never see the day when "Nazi chic" comes into vogue.
I think that I'll stop shopping at Target until this product line is removed.