Gap has a perfect response to racist comments about its Sikh model

Gap’s social media presence has always been great, and yesterday, it demonstrated exactly how a company should react in the face of racism and bigotry.

After vandals defaced a Gap subway ad by writing racist comments about the Sikh model featured in it, the clothing store responded swiftly by changing the background of its Twitter page to the same ad, in solidarity.

The company was first alerted to the vandalism through social media when Muslim blogger Arsalan Iftikhar tweeted this picture:

The ad was part of Gap’s “Make Love” campaign. Vandals had crossed the slogan out and scribbled “Make Bombs” and “Stop Driving Taxis” onto the ad, insulting both Sikhs, and the people they often get mistaken for, Muslims. Gap quickly responded to Iftikhar’s tweet:

Gap then changed the background of its Twitter page to the same ad to show its support, a move that earned it widespread praise from both Muslims and Sikhs alike.

First of all, Gap should be commended for featuring Sikh model Waris Ahluwaria in one of its ads. It’s an ethnicity that is pretty underrepresented in the fashion world, and the company deserved credit for featuring it in its campaign. Secondly, it’s an incredible way to stay true to your message of embracing diversity and love, and the move is already getting far more attention than any of the racism that inspired it. Well done Gap, it’s a great lesson in how to tastefully stand up against hate, and win new supporters at the same time.

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