Walmart has deleted from its website the three offensive Catholic Halloween costumes we objected to last week. Store officials made the right decision, albeit it took a barrage of angry Catholic patrons to trigger the outcome; they responded to our two news releases last week.
On October 29, we stated that most of the Catholic Halloween costumes were not problematic: for example, priestly garb was not offensive. But we did object to three costumes that crossed the line: a “Scary Mary Adult Halloween Costume” that showed Our Blessed Mother with blood dripping from her eyes; “Adult Evil Religious Nun Scary Men’s Halloween Costume” that depicted a nun in habit with a skeleton face; and an “Adult Confessional Costume” that featured a priest with a mock confessional unit over his head. We maintained that since Walmart had pulled “Fat Girl Costumes,” it should pull these three as well.
On October 30, after Walmart treated complaints lightly, we issued another news release, asking those who subscribe to our news release list to contact the store again. They did.
On October 31, we had collected many comments from Walmart responding to angry emails. The responses were varied: some were merely apologetic, while others were much more pointed: “This never should have been on our site. It is unacceptable, and we apologize. We have removed it and ensure this never happens again.”
We didn’t issue a news release on Halloween because when we left for the weekend, the offensive costumes were still available online, despite a statement to the contrary. But all three were subsequently taken down.
The heroes in this victory are all those who let Walmart know of their outrage. Congratulations to our base of supporters!