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As Halloween approaches in two months, we expect to see plenty of people dressing up as Minions, Minnie Mouse and yes, perhaps another Hot Cheeto. But the one costume we didn’t expect to hear about this year: Caitlyn Jenner.
Lisa Barr, senior director of marketing and creative at Spirit Halloween, explained that the costume is meant to celebrate the transgender icon — not make fun of her.
Barr issued the following statement to CNBC: “At Spirit Halloween, we create a wide range of costumes that are often based upon celebrities, public figures, heroes and superheroes. We feel that Caitlyn Jenner is all of the above and that she should be celebrated. The Caitlyn Jenner costume reflects just that.” (Among the celeb costumes offered at Spirit Halloween are those of Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry and KISS bandmembers.)
Despite Spirit Halloween’s explanation, the retailer is facing backlash from Jenner’s supporters, with a Change.org petition calling for them to revoke their idea of the costume.
“To make a costume out of a marginalized identity reduces that person and community to a stereotype for privileged people to abuse,” writes activist Addison Rose Vincent, who started the petition. “In this case, if you follow through with production of a Caitlyn Jenner costume, cisgender people will purchase it to make fun of her and our community.”
One supporter added: “I’m signing because Caitlyn is facing more than a Halloween costume already, and transphobic people wearing this on Halloween to ‘celebrate her’ isn’t going to help.”
Jenner’s rep declined to comment when reached by email.
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