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Major retailers remove Confederate flag merchandise


New York -- In the wake of a racially motivated mass shooting at a historically black Charleston, South Carolina church, major retailers, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Sears and Amazon, are announcing that they will no longer sell merchandise featuring the Confederate flag in stores or online.

"We have taken steps to remove all items promoting the Confederate flag from our assortment — whether in our stores or on our website," Wal-Mart said in a statement. "We have a process in place to help lead us to the right decisions when it comes to the merchandise we sell. Still, at times, items make their way into our assortment improperly — this is one of those instances."

In addition, a Sears spokesperson told Reuters that although it does not currently directly sell any Confederate flag merchandise in its stores or online, it will also remove any items featuring the flag sold by third-party sellers from its online marketplace., Etsy and Spenser Gifts have also joined in on removing or pledging to remove any items displaying the emblem of the Civil War-era South.

Online auction retailer Ebay is currently listing Confederate flags and related items for sale, but said it will remove them.

“We continually monitor the approximately 800 million items on our site, and evaluate our policies to ensure they are consistent with our core purpose,” Johnna Hoff, an eBay spokesperson, said in a statement. “This decision is consistent with our long-standing policy that prohibits items that promote or glorify hatred, violence and racial intolerance.”

While Target has not yet formally halted the sale of Confederate flags or Confederate-themed merchandise, CNBC reports the retailer has pulled a Confederate soldier costume from its e-commerce site.

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