Spain Issued ‘Equality Stamps’ in Skin Tones. The Darker Ones Were Worth Less.

MADRID — A brand new marketing campaign by Spain’s postal service that was supposed to sentence racism has backfired and ended up offending many individuals with a sequence of stamps in pores and skin tones — the lighter the shade, the extra precious the stamp.

The “Equality Stamps” have been issued this week to coincide with the anniversary of the homicide of George Floyd, the Black man whose killing by a police officer in Minneapolis fueled outrage on American streets and led to broad requires combating racism in the United States and past. The launch of the stamps additionally coincided with European Diversity Month.

Moha Gerehou, the writer of a brand new e book about racism in Spain, mentioned on Twitter that he understood that the postal service meant properly — however mentioned that it had misfired badly.

It is “an enormous contradiction,” he wrote — “a campaign that launches stamps with a different value depending on the color in order to show the equal value of our lives. The message is an absolute disaster.”

The value of the stamps begins at €0.70 (85 cents) for the darkest coloration, and because the shade grows progressively lighter, the worth steadily goes as much as €1.60 for the palest.

The postal service said on Twitter that the pricing had aimed to replicate “an unfair and painful reality that should not exist,” and that it had hoped the marketing campaign would “give voice to a generation devoted to equal rights and diversity.”

But some critics mentioned that this message was simply misplaced and that the marketing campaign performed into the fingers of Vox, the far-right social gathering that grew to become the third-largest group in Spain’s Parliament after elections in late 2019.

Mr. Gerehou, the writer and a Spanish native of Gambian descent, mentioned the postal service was becoming a member of a company antiracism push that had unfold to Spain from the United States. But he mentioned that such efforts wanted to be “accompanied by profound changes.”

The marketing campaign was designed with the assistance of SOS Racismo, an antiracism group, and promoted in a video by El Chojín, a rap artist.

SOS Racismo defended the stamps as “a very visual way to denounce the racism that thousands of people suffer in the Spanish state.”

The group mentioned the marketing campaign additionally highlighted broader issues just like the rise of xenophobia in Europe and the plight of migrants looking for to make the perilous journey from northern Africa and the Middle East into Spain by way of the Mediterranean.

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