Remove "Spirit Animal" Shirt from All Torrid Stores & Website

Remove "Spirit Animal" Shirt from All Torrid Stores & Website

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Alesia Copeland Blakney started this petition to torrid

In preparation for Halloween the retail store Torrid released a shirt that completely misses the mark while appropriating Native American culture at the same time. The shirt in question reads "Binx Is My Spirit Animal" and shows a cat posed on a moon (link to view the shirt can be found at the bottom of the page). While I myself am not Indigenous I find that is is important to speak up when large fashion brands use religious or cultural symbols that don't belong to them. 

If you're unfamiliar, SA's are part of a sacred religious tradition that is specific to only a handful of tribes in North America. It’s important to note that the term “spirit animal” was coined by white anthropologists and that the true name for these guides cannot be known by those in the western world. Also, up until the late 1970’s it was ILLEGAL in the United States for Indigenous people to practice their spiritual and religious beliefs freely and openly. It wasn’t until the American Indian Religious Freedom Act was passed in 1978 that Native Americans were allowed to practice their religions. In 1994 an amendment had to be added to the act in order to loosen restrictions that were still in place despite the original act. No other group of people in the United States needs an act from congress in order to practice their religious beliefs and cultural traditions. 

When people who are not Native American or Indigenous use cultural terms or objects those terms and objects start to turn into novelties, novelties that people wrongly believe are for mass consumption. I understand that there is a certain enthusiasm and strong kinship to something that you want to portray when using the term “spirit animal” but I hope you can now see that it's wrong to use that term. Moving forward I would like to see Torrid immediately pull the shirt from all of their retail stores and their website, issue a public apology, and contact the tribes who have been harmed by the appropriation of their religious traditions in order to further make amends. 

https://www.torrid.com/product/disney-hocus-pocus-binx-glow-in-the-dark-top/13343052.html

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