While there’s no doubt that Target has become the go-to retailer for many parents and their everyday needs, this mother was quite surprised to find a humorous Father’s Day card that she didn’t find funny at all. In fact, she was quite offended with the message behind the card.
Target shopper Takeisha Saunders took to her Facebook account to share an image of the Father’s Day card, which was made by American Greetings. She explains that she was looking for a card for her husband but was taken a back by the words “Baby Daddy” on the card.
If that weren’t enough, the car featured an illustration of a black man and a woman kissing. Inside, the card said, “You're a wonderful husband and father — and I'm so grateful to have you as my partner, my friend, and my baby daddy! Happy Father's Day."
Saunders said that because she’s an African-American herself, she tends to gravitate towards products that represent her. But with this card, she was both surprised and disappointed at the same time. To make matters worse, it was the only card that featured a black couple. She also pointed out that the term baby daddy often refers to an absent parent, or for lack of a better term, a “deadbeat” father.
She told Buzzfeed in an interview, “My husband is not my baby daddy. I think many people who use the term are not aware of its actual definition so they said I was being overly sensitive and to get over it. So I posted my comments to Target and to American Greetings so they can know how it missed the mark."
So this is what @Target thinks about black families, that we have baby daddy’s and not father, SMH, this is why we have to start pulling our resources because we have to separate, come in to UNITY , and help ourselves and own our own stores pic.twitter.com/oUi852Uy1b— Taliah (@taliahpasha) June 12, 2018
Saunders’ Facebook post sparked a heated conversation online, with many critics questioning the use of the term “baby daddy” on the card. Some argued that the card intended to be humorous or that it tried to put a positive spin on the supposed baby daddy image. Others were upset that the message was in bad taste.
In response, Target has decided to pull the card from about 900 of its stores nationwide. The retailer released as statement that said the company wants all guests to feel both welcomed and respected when they shop at Target.
Thanks for sharing this with us. We assure you it is never our intention to offend our guests with the merchandise we provide. We sincerely apologize to anyone this particular card has offended. Please verify the store location this was displayed so we can share your feedback.— AskTarget (@AskTarget) June 12, 2018
In addition, American Greetings also explains that the card was created for a “loving husband” and that the message was taken out of context. But at the same time the company says they understand how the front page might have communicated an unintentional meaning. They also added that the message is not consistent with the company’s purpose and values while also promising to “do better” in the future.