Sept 9th – Dec 1st, 2008 Spanish & French press
So the story goes like this: I plant Jesus Dress Up on the shelves of Toy-R-Us in Times Square (Sept 9th, 08) as described in the sidebar on page 382 of Hate Mail. After my exit, a Spaniard on vacation with his family walks into that Toys-R-Us, sees the magnets, can’t find anyone to assist him with his complaint, so when he returns to Spain he phones 1-800-ToysRUs and gets the brush off: “We sell all types of products” [elConfidential]. Sooo he takes it to the internet, campaigning against the toy store.
Someone doesn’t do their research and Le Figaro News cries “Boycott!”
Gossip spreads faster than fact, and before you know it the internet’s steaming with rumors, trumping it up to the Hitler\KKK version & speculation that Toys-R-Us is sidestepping the controversy with the excuse: “some individual operated on his own!” [Hazteoir.org] even though “the product was perfectly identified with bar code and price!” [Padre Rayito]
“we want to arm a crusade to show their management that they cannot make fun of the Church of Christ and its members when disguising Jesus Christ as Hitler, of flamenco dancer, a Teletubbie, Ku Klux Klan, Bin Laden, a prisoner, gorilla…”
Note that I only left Original Jesus Dressup magnets at their stores, but the Padre found my site, and leaped on the most extreme ones to mention in his blog. Anyhow, the matter and the magnets have all been turned over to their legal department [Unitas.fr] –
“Our contact in the United States found an Internet site on which a person admits to having introduced this item during a few minutes in the store in New York City, and this without the knowledge of Toys R’ Us, with an obvious aim to harm our reputation. Once the article discovered by our teams, it immediately was withdrawn and preserved for the investigation to come. You will understand that we are strongly affected by the gesture of this person. The Legal department of our Group currently studies the legal remedy to implement and we’re currently taking the necessary measures so that does not happen again.”
This, once again, was another untrue statement: MOHAMMED DRESSUP FOR SALE IN TOYS R US >>
You’ve probably noticed some of the new, beautiful ads scattered throughout the site featuring Super Chic Christy Christ showcasing various Jesus Dressup magnet sets. I’ve added some new images to the Banners section of my site that you’ll find hard to resist. Go ahead, try to resist her. You can’t can you? That’s why she’s my Super Chic.
I just received word that a large French newspaper “le Figaro” (http://lefigaro.fr/) reported that my magnets were on sale at Toys-R-Us. I just finished a phone interview with Matthieu Bock, a reporter for French National Radio Europe (will air tomorrow), and apparently a Christian person called in the news to the paper.
From what I could gather from the reporter’s account, a call was actually made to Toys-R-Us and they responded “No. That is not us. It’s a boy in New York who did this. We do not carry the magnet.”
Of course the rumor stemmed from the visit I made 4 months ago to Toys-R-Us Times Square when I infiltrated their store and planted the toys on their shelves myself. Read the sidebar of hate mail page 382.
I told the reporter that I did indeed go and put them on the shelves myself because Toys-R-Us refused to stock them and I felt they should. I waited and watched people go up and take them to purchase, so I was right. The reporter asked if I was aware the story was in this very big paper in France and I said I was not, but am happy it is, and I’ll go put my magnets in Walmart next.
Here is the letter from a French fan explaining what he read, and the article translated from here:
“Hi Normal Bob
First of all thanks for the silly humor on your site which I enjoyed. I live in Paris France and only just discovered it because of the internet buzz about the Toy’R’us boycott mentioned in le Figaro, a conservative right wing daily newspaper, which once again has made a fool of itself. Bravo for taking on the fundies as you call them. Luckily here in France they are not so powerful as in the US (after all our forefathers and mothers did kick their butts in 1789 when we also chopped of our good king’s head, so they tend to keep a lower profile here). But there are a few left and they’re as stupid as everywhere else. Also many kudos for taking the time to answer the mounds of appalling hate mail you receive! It’s nice to hear someone tell’em like it is. You mention the Figaro article on your site saying you’d like to know more about it , I found it and translated it for you. It was a short piece but is being relayed a lot on other webmedias and blogs so you’re probably getting a lot of hits from France these days. Here’s the figaro piece, in case you haven’t found it already:
A Toy Upsets Christians
Mobilization of christian groups: a few weeks before christmas, the toy store Toys’R’Us is selling an untasteful game, to say the least..