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GAP: Discontinue the "MANIFEST DESTINY" tshirt and issue a formal apology.
  • Petitioned Glenn K. Murphy, Chairman and CEO

This petition was delivered to:

Glenn K. Murphy, Chairman and CEO
Mark McNairy

GAP: Discontinue the "MANIFEST DESTINY" tshirt and issue a formal apology.

    1. Petition by

      Dorit I.

GAP is selling a black shirt with the words "MANIFEST DESTINY" written on it. This article of clothing promotes a belief that has resulted in the mass genocide of indigenous people, and it serves to normalize oppression. This shirt is marketed to teens and young adults, and it gives no context for the racism and inequality that persists in our society, to this day, as a result of this doctrine. We are asking that this shirt be discontinued, and that an apology be issued.

Until this is done, we are asking that followers of this petition also consider other means of contacting GAP. This includes: *EMAIL* Gap at custserv@gap.com and CC the designer at info@markmcnairy.com; *TWEET* @Gap and @mmcnairy; CALL* Gap at (650) 952-4400; and/or *MESSAGE or COMMENT* on the Gap Facebook company page, http://www.facebook.com/gap

The tshirt that GAP is selling can be seen here: http://www.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=47214&vid=1&pid=349697002

To view more of Gap's Colonization clothing line, please go to the following link:



We thank the signers of this petition for their commitment to equality and social justice.


From Indigenous Action Media:

"Manifest destiny" was the symbolic banner settler colonizers marched behind while waging genocidal wars against Indigenous Peoples. This shirt design is grossly offensive and should be immediately removed. I certainly don't think 'Arbeit macht frei' would have made it this far. Gap Inc, has been under serious scrutiny for exploitative labor practices within the past couple of decades, maybe they are just now making their intentions more clear?"

- Klee Benally, IndigenousAction.org


FOR ANY MEDIA INQUIRY, please contact:
Corine Fairbanks
American Indian Movement Southern California
(805) 284-4114


Recent signatures


    1. Awaiting Response from Gap Regarding Further Action

      Dorit I.
      Petition Organizer

      Although the short-term goals of this petition have been met, the long-term goals of ending oppression and bringing awareness to historical and transgenerational trauma continues. As a symbolic gesture, we have decided not to declare this petition a “victory.”

      Gap needs to focus on repairing the damage it has caused to its relationship with American Indians, other indigenous tribes, and their allies.

      We have invited Gap to contact us to further address this rupture. We are awaiting to see if Gap is willing to take actionable steps to foster a better relationship with these affected groups for the future. Whether Gap will accept our invitation for further collaboration will demonstrate whether they sincerely intend to follow through on the process of making amends.

      We will post additional updates to inform our supporters.

    2. Gap Issues Statement On Facebook Page

      Dorit I.
      Petition Organizer

      On 10/16/12 at 4:24pm, Gap posted the following statement on it's facebook page: "We’re sincerely sorry for the offense that the “Manifest Destiny” t-shirt may have caused. This shirt was part of the partnership between Gap and GQ featuring new designers and was never meant to be insensitive. Because of your feedback, we made the decision to no longer sell the t-shirt as soon as it was brought to our attention. The t-shirt has been removed from Gap.com and we are in the process of removing it from our stores. We are also focusing on how we select product designs for these types of partnerships in the future. Thank you for your continued feedback; we’re always listening."

    3. Reached 5,000 signatures
    4. PRESS RELEASE AND EVENT: American Indian Movement - Southern California

      Dorit I.
      Petition Organizer

      "AIM So Cal has the following demands: 1) Discontinue all four shirts and advertisements with these shirts from online and offline sale and promotion; 2) That all money profited from the sale of the four shirts be donated to the legal defense for political prisoner Leonard Peltier, for his freedom and to bring him home! 3) Fire the designer Mark McNairy, and agree to never contract with this designer in the future; 4) Most importantly, AIM So Cal demands that Gap and McNairy issue a public, formal apology, taking full responsibility for the creation, marketing and sales of these shirts." According to the following link, you may download the JPEG of full press release at link, or email aimsocalmedia@yahoo.com for a PDF or Word version. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=3840993231403&set=a.2118418008099.217098.1475229416&type=1&theater.
      EVENT regarding AIM So Cal is at https://www.facebook.com/events/369207419829661/

    5. Recognition to media and news outlets

      Dorit I.
      Petition Organizer

      9:00 pm, OCT. 15, 2012 - We would like to officially recognize and thank all of the major, local, and independent news/media sources who have assisted our cause by bringing awareness to this issue. We also officially and wholeheartedly thank the individuals who have posted and reposted the petition link to their own networks through the variety of social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, etc). However, our fight is not over. STAY POSTED! Original news/media sources that have been brought to our attention as contributing breaking news (and we apologize if we missed anyone):

      - SALON
      - THE BELLE JAR Blog
      - RACIALICIOUS Tumbler
      *News update by S. M.

    6. Reached 4,000 signatures
    7. Gap removes MANIFEST DESTINY shirt from website

      Dorit I.
      Petition Organizer

      7:30 pm, OCT. 15, 2012 - In response to our petition and allies' efforts, Gap.com has removed the MANIFEST DESTINY t-shirt from their sales website. The link that previously led online browsers to the shirt's sale page now leads to a page stating, "We're sorry, but the product, outfit, or department you selected is unavailable at this time." This is only a partial success in our efforts, as there is not adequate evidence that Gap has removed these shirts from physical store locations. Just two hours ago, we received a first-hand report from an ally stating that the shirts were still on display and for sale during her visit to the Downtown San Francisco, CA Gap store (which is located approximately 15 blocks from Gap Headquarters). Our ally reported that while attempting to take photos of the display, she was pressured to leave by Gap store sales staff. Hence, we are awaiting full and consistent execution follow-through, by Gap.
      *News update by S. M.

    8. Reached 3,000 signatures
    9. GAP designer tweets inflammatory response

      Dorit I.
      Petition Organizer

      6:16 pm, OCT. 13, 2012 - The Gap shirt designer, Mark McNairy, responded on his twitter page last night. He tweeted, "MANIFEST DESTINY. SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST." (He has since deleted this tweet, but a signer of this petition captured a screenshot.) This is inexcusable. At this point, this petition is also asking that this designer be fired from Gap immediately. A link to the screenshot: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151197786087436&set=o.14856729724&type=1&theater
      ||UPDATE|| 12:15 pm, OCT. 15, 2012 - Mark McNairy stated the following on his Twitter account, @mmcnairy: "I AM SORRY FOR MY SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST COMMENT. IT HURT ME DEEPLY TO BE CALLED A RACIST AS THAT IS NOT ME. I REACTED WITHOUT THINKING." Screenshot link to come.

    10. Reached 500 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Mary L. Miller APPLETON, WI
      • 6 months ago

      This "quote" speaks loudly to genocide of the Native American People. It promotes the killing. I wonder if you really choose to promote something so racist, and evil.

    • Juanita Sloss BROWNING, MT
      • 6 months ago

      This shirt normalizes oppression to indiginious people...that's not right, so please remove it from your sales!

    • Jim Quinlan BROOKVILLE, IN
      • 6 months ago

      The t shirt promotes racism

    • Ruby A Beaulieu PORT RICHEY, FL
      • 6 months ago

      It's a symbol of Native People's genocide.

    • Shea Sandy NA, UNITED STATES
      • 6 months ago

      The concept of "manifest destiny" resulted in the largest holocaust to ever take place and in fact is still taking place. To make T shirts that glorify the idea that "god" gave europeans the right to commit genocide against Indigenous people of the americas and else where and then colonize their homelands is simply promoting hate and genocide. What's next Hitler T-shirts?


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