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American Girl company is ‘disgusted’ by parody ad of a gun-wielding ‘Karen’ doll who refuses to wear face mask during the coronavirus crisis

American Girl said it is 'disgusted' by an online advertisement parody that features a gun-wielding Walmart shopper dubbed 'Karen' who refuses to wear a face mask during the coronavirus pandemic. 
The parody features an American Girl doll altered to wear a purple track suit, hold a semi-automatic handgun and appears to be in a Walmart store without a face mask.
'Meet Karen,' the fake image reads. 'She's an independent thinker who refuses to wear a mask in public places!'
The image was shared to Facebook by Adam the Creator and quickly picked up steam across social media. 
An American Girl parody advertisement shared to social media shows a doll carrying a handgun and refusing to wear a face mask
An American Girl parody advertisement shared to social media shows a doll carrying a handgun and refusing to wear a face mask 

The name 'Karen' has been used to describe entitled middle-aged white women in modern slang, but can apply to people who use their privilege to exert power in oftentimes unnecessary instances.  
The pop culture phrase has skyrocketed in recent months after several 'Karen' incidents were shared online, including one incident when Amy Cooper of New York City falsely reported to police that a black man was attacking her in Central Park after he asked that she leash her dog. 
In this case, the term 'Karen' has been used as a catch-all moniker to target a number of Americans who now refuse to wear face masks in public during the coronavirus pandemic.
Cooper was filmed falsely telling police that Cooper, who is not related to her, was threatening her life after he told her to leash her dog
Cooper was filmed falsely telling police that Cooper, who is not related to her, was threatening her life after he told her to leash her dog
Cooper was filmed falsely telling police that Cooper, who is not related to her, was threatening her life after he told her to leash her dog
A woman dubbed 'Costco Karen' was recorded throwing a tantrum and sitting on the floor because she refused to wear a face mask inside
A woman dubbed 'Costco Karen' was recorded throwing a tantrum and sitting on the floor because she refused to wear a face mask inside 
Several such instances have cropped up in recent weeks as the public health measure became politicized amid a particularly divisive time in the United States. 
One such incident involved a white woman dubbed 'Costco Karen,' who threw a tantrum and sat on the floor of a Oregon-area store because she was asked to wear a face mask per store protocol in June. 
As of Sunday, the United States has recorded 2,839,917 coronavirus cases and 129,676 deaths. 
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention 'recommends that people wear cloth face coverings in public settings and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.'
Several companies have required staffers and shopper to wear the protective measure while inside store locations. 
The parody advertisement continued to circulate across social media, but got American Girl's attention after a Twitter user became confused by the image.
'I saw a post of an American Girl doll, Karen, who refuses to wear a mask and carries a gun as disgusting. Is this what we want to teach our children?' the user asked. 
American Girl said that it was 'equally disgusted' by the altered image in a Twitter post last Wednesday
American Girl said that it was 'equally disgusted' by the altered image in a Twitter post last Wednesday
The company also said was ensuring that the 'copyright violation is handled appropriately'
The company also said was ensuring that the 'copyright violation is handled appropriately'
American Girl has shared images and YouTube videos encouraging customers to wear recommended masks during the pandemic
American Girl has shared images and YouTube videos encouraging customers to wear recommended masks during the pandemic
American Girl responded some hours later to condemn the altered image and assured they were aware of it.
'Donna, we were equally disgusted with this post. Please be assured we are taking the appropriate steps to ensure this is removed,' the company wrote on July 1.
On Sunday, the brand added that the incident has evolved into a copyright violation and is being looked into. 
Unlike the advertisement, American Girl has already vocalized support for following recommended public health safety measures. 
The company shared an image of a face mask-wearing American Girl doll on June 24, as well as published a YouTube tutorial in May explaining how to create a DIY face mask for the dolls.
The official 2020 American Girl of The Year is a new doll named Joss Kenderick, an avid surfer who was born with partial hearing loss. 

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