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Hat makers distance from Nashville store amid uproar over ‘Not Vaccinated’ badges

Several prominent hat makers have distanced themselves from a Nashville hat store amid online backlash over the store’s decision to sell yellow “Not Vaccinated” patches shaped like the Star of David.

The controversy started after the owner of hatWRKS posted a photo on Instagram of a woman wearing a yellow sticker shaped like the Star of David with the words “not vaccinated” on it, the Tennessean reported.

The post, which has since been deleted, quickly garnered backlash. The hashtag #HateWorks soon started trending as critics condemned the badges, similar to ones Nazis forced Jews to wear during the Holocaust.

 

HatWRKS originally defended its move on Friday in two Instagram posts, saying people were outraged by the badges but not the “tyranny the world is experiencing.”

The second post expressed fears that people could not return to various aspects of normal life without “showing your papers.”

“This has been the push, that is not fiction. Much of that is happening right now. There is a historical parallel to fascism to be drawn. We can only fight back to not relive history,” the post read.

According to WRKN in Nashville, protestors surrounded the store on Saturday, with demonstrators holding up a “No Nazis in Nashville” sign in front of the store.

American hat maker Stetson announced on Twitter on Saturday that it was no longer selling its hats with the store.

Another hat maker, Goorin Bros, said on Instagram that it was “horrified by the display and selling of the Jewish badge by HatWRKS.”

“To make a mockery of the Holocaust in any form is unacceptable and completely insensitive. We are looking at all options to fix and address this unfortunate circumstance,” the company said.

On Saturday evening, hatWRKS posted an apology for the badges to Instagram, saying “in NO WAY did I intend to trivialize the Star of David or disrespect what happened to millions of people.”

“My intent was not to exploit or make a profit. My hope was to share my genuine concern & fear, and to do all that I can make sure that nothing like that ever happens again. I sincerely apologize for any insensitivity,” the post read.

The Hill has reached out to hatWRKS for further comment.

The controversy comes after Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) sparked backlash for referencing the Holocaust when slamming Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for keeping the mask mandate on the House floor.

Greene later said she compared the mandates to “discrimination against Jews in early Nazi years” and not the Holocaust.

Tags Coronavirus COVID-19 Marjorie Taylor Greene Nancy Pelosi nashville Tennessee
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