Ellen DeGeneres' Gap Kids clothing line, GapKids X ED, is all about encouraging children to embrace what makes them unique. But its that "empowerment" aspect of the brand's campaigns that had many confused the most recent photos posted to GapKids' Twitter account on Saturday.
One photo showed two white children doing acrobatic moves while a third older white child leans her arm on the black child seen in the ad. Many people on Twitter took issue with the tweet that reads "meet the kids who are proving that girls can do anything."
Not only is GapKids being called out for only using one "token" child of color; some also pointed out that the brand was presenting black girls as a mere "arm rest" or support, unlike the other white girls who can "do anything."
Filmmaker Matthew A. Cherry resurfaced a past GapKids campaign photo that featured a similarly designed shot, only this one with a black child using a white child as an armrest, igniting further debate.
As seen in a short video tweeted by GapKids, there were plenty of other photos taken during the shoot, most of which show the black girl being more than just being an armrest.
Regardless of Gaps intent (Mic has reached out for comment), it's apparent that the photos have started a heated debate — something that could've been avoided with a more diverse cast of children, different photo choices and a marketing team that caught the blunder before it went viral.
What do you think? Much ado about nothing? Or does Gap deserve further scrutiny?
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