Abercrombie & Fitch have dropped model Mike McCauley from their Face Your Fierce body positive marketing campaign, after past racist tweets resurfaced on social media. The campaign, which features a diverse cast of athletes, models, authors, and activists, featured McCauley as their lone plus size male model.
As McCauley received more attention for being part of the campaign, the posts in question recirculated online. In one of the tweets, McCauley calls the Black Lives Matter movement “extremists.” He also complained about them blocking the streets, making him late for a meeting. In another post, McCauley complained about Jada Pinkett Smith’s #OscarsSoWhite stance, saying he would boycott the Grammys because “not enough white people were nominated.”
After the posts resurfaced, McCauley responded with apologies on Twitter and Instagram stating that his comments were not meant to be hurtful.
Many on social media criticized the response as a “half-assed” attempt to get on the internet’s good side, with some commenters saying that McCauley should stop modeling altogether. Abercrombie & Fitch fired him from the campaign and future work. In a statement to Queerty, the company elaborated on their decision:
A&F has worked hard over the last few years, particularly under new leadership, to improve and be more inclusive with everything we do, including our marketing, our size ranges, our charitable partners, our store experiences and our hiring practices. A&F’s Face Your Fierce campaign was created to help promote diversity, equity and inclusion, and the comments made by Mike McCauley clearly do not support that goal. They also contradict the values of our company, our associates and our customers. As such, we are no longer working with him.