Shoppers call for Zara to be boycotted after head designer allegedly sends Islamophobic text

·4-min read

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Customers are calling for Zara to be boycotted.
Customers are calling for Zara to be boycotted.

Customers are calling for Zara to be boycotted over a recent controversy surrounding a designer fro the brand.

The company's head women's designer, Vanessa Perilman, is under fire for allegedly sending off Islamophobic texts to Palestinian model Qaher Harhash. 

The text messages came to light after the entrepreneur Hannah Rsk shared screenshots to her more than 90,000 Instagram followers.

"So your point is that you are trying to show the world that Israel is a horrible, evil country that does terrible things to Palestinians? OMG, I want to vomit," the text allegedly sent to Harhash reads. "It's so unfair and such lies. But it's OK. The people in my industry know the truth about Israel and Palestine."

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"I will never stop defending Israel. People like you come and go, and in the end, as the Jews survived the Holocaust, we will survive this bull—— circus media that you are posting," Perilman allegedly continued. "Maybe if your people were educated then they wouldn't blow up the hospitals and schools that Israel helped pay for in Gaza."

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"Israelis don't teach children to hate nor throw stones at soldiers as your people do," she reportedly went on. "Also, I think it's funny that you're a model because in reality, that is against what the Muslim faith believes in, and if you were to come out of the closet in any Muslim country, you would be stoned to death."

Harhash subsequently released screenshots of his response to Perilman's initial messages. "I've ignored you for days, but you keep coming back for more," he allegedly wrote. "Do you understand that you are bullying me on my profile?"

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"You work for a brand that models want to work with. Does your little brain teach you about power dynamics and how this could possibly hurt me?" he reportedly continued. "No. So I will not back down from what I posted."

He went on to call Perilman ignorant, and wish better things for her children. "You are ignorant and I pray that your kids are raised better than what you write on people's posts."

Despite Perilman's several attempts at apologizing to Harhash, he noted in his Instagram story that he didn't feel her apologies were genuine or acceptable.

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"There are 10 different apologies in the conversation between her and me, but I kept having to tell her to try again because her messages would have 'buts' or 'ifs,'" he wrote. "In addition to that, she wanted me to understand the Israeli perspective, which we all know means forced coexistence under the same status quo."

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"For me, an apology means to fully acknowledge the pain or suffering you caused someone," he added. "She came into my DMs and wrote hateful comments. Why should I accept a half-a—— apology?"

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Naturally, the unveiling of Perilman's alleged text messages has sparked a major controversy, resulting in Twitter calling for Zara to be boycotted going forward.

"Zara must condemn this loud and clear. 'Til then we can and we must boycott," one person tweeted, while another added, "I will not buy Zara anymore."

"F—- Zara. I'm so glad I've never shopped from there," someone else wrote

"So disappointing that I won’t ever shop at Zara again," added another. "Probably 70% of my wardrobe is Zara. I buy something once a month minimum from Zara. But I can’t support a company that supports any type of hate speech."

"This is really outlandish," another tweeted. "These remarks are not just misplaced or ignorant but are extremely racist and hateful, and they demonstrate the core prejudice of the individual."

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