Not even 12 hours after President Donald Trump told the far-right extremist group known as the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by,” popular online retailers were flooded with merchandise featuring the now infamous white supremacist call to action.
Now, at least two of those retailers, both Amazon and TeeSpring, are stepping in to stop the sale of these items.
“All sellers must follow our selling guidelines and those who do not will be subject to action including potential removal of their account,” an Amazon spokesperson told CBS News Thursday, aligning with their company policy to ban all products featuring hatred and intolerance and users who try to sell them. “The products in question have been removed.”
TeeSpring also told CBS that they removed the items from their digital storefront, though VICE News was still able to find at least one user on the website by the name of “stand back and stand by shirts” selling 18 variations of sweatshirts, tees, hoodies and tank tops with the words emblazoned on them.
The TeeSpring webpage selling these products is only accessible through a specific link. Searching for “stand back and stand by” items on TeeSpring’s website as normal returns only a single result: an anti-Proud Boys shirt encouraging people to vote.
Similarly, Twitter users screen-shotted shirts, pins and stickers on Ebay featuring the racist call to action. As of Thursday afternoon, Ebay support replied on the social media platform.
While the three retailers seemed to block the sale of items supporting white supremacist beliefs, Etsy, the popular DIY retailer, did not follow suit. As of Thursday, VICE News found at least one user, ONESTOPSPACESHOP, selling red and yellow variations of the “Stand By and Stand Back” Proud Boys t-shirt.
Another user, by the name of RawBoxLab, is selling an “Anti-Fascist” variant of the shirt featuring Donald Trump donning a toothbrush mustache, similar to the one made famous by Adolf Hitler.
On Friday, Etsy responded and said the items in question would be removed.
“Sellers on Etsy agree to follow our policies, which prohibit, among other things, hate against protected identities, attempting to incite violence against individuals or groups,” an Etsy spokeswoman said. “We have removed the items in question, and we continue to actively monitor the site and review and remove merchandise that violates our policies.”
Since Tuesday’s presidential debate, the “stand back and stand by” phrase has been embraced by the white nationalist groups like the Proud Boys after Trump shrugged off a chance to denounce his white supremacist supporters when prompted by Fox News’ Chris Wallace.
“Proud Boys? Stand back and stand by,” Trump responded to the moderator’s question. “But I'll tell you what, somebody's gotta do something about antifa and the left, because this is not a right-wing problem; this is a left-wing problem.”