Just opened a box of @Pampers from @Target and found some knuckle-dragging racist slipped this card into the box. BOLO for regressive charlatans. (The reverse had links for fascist, neo-nazi, and alt-right sites. Though that must mean all 3 are the same thing) pic.twitter.com/uFuGVRRcjx— David Tad Russell (@DavidTadRussell) March 25, 2018
A number of families across the United States were understandably shocked and outraged to find a laminated white card inside boxes of diapers they had bought for their kids. It wasn’t a coupon or a promotional tag as one might expect. Instead, it was a message — and a very disturbing one at that.
The card read, “IT’S OKAY TO BE WHITE.” It also listed a series of white supremacist, neo-Nazi and alt-right websites on the back, including Fash the Nation, bloodandsoil.org and a link to the Daily Stormer.
Since the boxes had been ordered from Target, some of the affected customers not only informed the corporate giant about this unwelcomed message, which appears to have become a slogan for white supremacists in recent years, but also took to social media to talk about the cards they had discovered.
@LonnyWilk Wife and I bought these Target diapers and found a really racist, hateful laminated card inside under the diapers. On the front it says “it’s ok to be white!” My wife just gets a run around from the Target call centers. It’s clearly happening to others. What can we do? pic.twitter.com/2dxjRrUjse— Mike (@mikelechter) March 2, 2018
I'm certain this was in a yellow Target brand diaper box. I was volunteering at a diaper bank, wrapping donations for those in need and opening lots of boxes at once. This is why I'm so glad I found that gross, racist trash and not some in need new parent opening donated diapers!— LollipopSailor (@LollipopSailor) March 28, 2018
You know America is in trouble, when White Nationalist propaganda is being found in boxes of Pampers purchased at Target in Virginia. Baby diapers? WTF?? pic.twitter.com/xUR3eddMfh— Amy Moro #RESIST (@AmyMoro) March 7, 2018
@Pampers @Target I've now heard that two moms have found these in their diaper boxes from Target. What is going on? There is white supremacist info on the back. #racism #target #pampers pic.twitter.com/kd6Apf85wM— Lacey Hopkins (@laceyhopkins) March 24, 2018
At least two people also filed complaints with the Anti-Defamation League. One of the boxes was bought from a store in Washington while the other had been delivered to Florida from a facility in Indiana.
In March, a family in Tennessee also found a similar card inside a box of diapers.
“I looked on the back and it was just five or six websites that I recognized the language that was used from the Charlottesville incident late last year,” Tad Russell, the man who found the note, told WRCB.
Now, Target has fired the employee it identified as responsible for slipping the white nationalist message in the diaper boxes, according to BuzzFeed News.
“After being made aware of the situation, we immediately launched a thorough investigation to address the concerns and put a stop to it,” said Target spokesman Joshua Thomas. “We have identified the source, and given this is a violation of our policies and our commitment to inclusivity, terminated the team member.”
It’s unclear if more employees were involved in the incident.
The slogan “it’s okay to be white” gained prominence after the deadly rally in Charlottesville that ended in the death of anti-racism protester Heather Heyer, although it has been around for a while. Back in 2001, a white nationalist group named Aggressive Force had a song title using the phrase, as Newsweek reported. Since 2012, members of United Klans of America have reportedly been using its abbreviation as a hashtag — #IOKTBW — on social media.
Last year in November, former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke published an article on his website, called “It’s OK to Be White Campaign Sweeping the Nation!”