Bed Bath & Beyond pulls jack-o'-lanterns over blackface claims: ‘An extreme lack of sensitivity’


Bed Bath & Beyond has removed a line of jack-o'-lanterns from its website following claims that the pumpkins were racially offensive.

The controversy stemmed from complaints against a law office in the small village of Nyack, NY., News 12 Westchester reported. The firm, which purchased the decorations from Bed Bath & Beyond's online store, started receiving complaints after displaying them on their front steps.

The complaints, according to the New York Post, called the lanterns "another form of blackface" and led to the pumpkins being taken down within 48 hours. The Halloween decorations featured an all-black face with large white eyes and a white mouth.

Wilbur Aldridge, a regional director for the NAACP, told News 12 the design showed an "extreme lack of sensitivity."

Mary Marzolla, a partner at the law firm, said her business never meant to display that sort of message, but she noted that they "immediately" took the pumpkins down once they received complaints.

"We represent people of all colors and faiths, and we would never do anything to exclude anyone from any community," Marzolla told News 12.

Bed Bath & Beyond was equally swift with its response, with Fox News confirming that the items had been removed from the retailer's website as of Wednesday morning. The company apologized for the pumpkins, noting in a statement that the product had only been available online, and had not been sold in its stores.