Kusi Kimani, a 29-year-old Black girl from East Sussex, recently checked out the website of a popular retail clothing brand, and while browsing through the site, was shocked to find a brown bra named “tobacco”.
Interestingly, the light coloured padded bras, on the other hand, had names based on desserts like “fudge” and “cinnamon”.
Soon, Kimani complained about the bra for her skin tone carrying negative connotations, while using more “positive words” for the lighter ones, reported Mirror.
While the bra is still being sold under the same name, the retailer formally apologised to Kimani and pledged to drop the name soon.
“I saw it about two weeks after George Floyd’s death and it was particularly raw to see at that time. Why not call it cocoa, caramel or chocolate – sweet dessert items? But they used tobacco. I was shocked when I saw it,” Kimani was quoted as saying.
“Each week that website is showing that racism (the negative lingerie name), is another week (when) a young girl may come across it and feel bad for the rest of her life. To see that ‘tobacco’ is for their skin tone will make them feel unwanted by society. Tobacco is referred to in society as bad, unhealthy, and highly likely to kill – ‘smoking kills’,” she further expressed.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson from the retail company was quoted as saying, “In June we shared our commitments to being a truly inclusive place to shop and work and were honest that we have more to do and more to learn.”
Social media, however, seemed divided in their opinion.
And this weeks prize for finding offence in the most absurd place goes to (drum roll) #kusikimani
Congratulations you absolute weapon! pic.twitter.com/dbsUoVr6d5
— Craig E (@bbq_craig) August 12, 2020
#kusikimani the amount of racism in response to this is insane. If it is just a bra name why do people care if the colour changes. Also shes not the spokesperson for all people of colour. She has picked up the issue correctly but may not have come up with a good solution.
— Bibi Towley (@bibitowley) August 13, 2020
BLM is a serious issue. This kind of nonsense sets it back, get a grip doll
— J (@jasonpl) August 11, 2020