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Florida Walmart and Texas mattress store slammed for shockingly tasteless 9/11 ads

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A pair of stores — one in Texas and another in Florida — have outraged customers with tasteless references to 9/11 in advertisements.

The Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks have been referenced in ads before, some more touchingly than others, but this latest pair more closely resembles the crass “twin chowers” Subway parody cooked up three years ago by The Onion.

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A Walmart store in Panama City, Florida, set up a display using boxes of black Coke Zero stacked into two tall columns resembling the doomed World Trade Center, while other Coca-Cola boxes form an American flag behind them, reported WKMG-TV.

Above the display is a custom-printed banner, featuring Walmart and Coca-Cola logos, reading: “9/11/01: We will never forget.”

The retailer initially approved the display, but it has since been removed after customers complained.

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A San Antonio store Miracle Mattress aired a tacky “Twin Tower sale” TV ad just once — but the backlash was swift and severe.

“Right now, you can get any size mattress for a twin price,” a woman says in the ad, which ends with two men knocking her over and then each tearing down a tower of mattresses as she looks on in horror.

“Oh no, oh no,” the woman screams, before turning toward the camera. “Never forget.”

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A viewer recorded cell phone video of the TV ad and posted it on the Facebook page for KSAT-TV.

The store posted an apology Thursday on its own Facebook page and was flooded with angry customer reactions.

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“You’re sorry you offended me?” said one customer. “That’s not an apology I accept. Apologizing for creating it in the first place would be a start. Admitting you were WRONG for creating it is another step. There will never be an appropriate time to mock 9/11, and to do it to promote mattress sales?! Are you kidding me? Have some self respect.”

The store claimed to be “full of military” and that some employees had lost loved ones on 9/11 — but customers weren’t buying it.

“I find it hard to believe you knew anyone or any of your employees knew anyone who lost their lives in 9/11,” another person wrote. “If that were the case they would have been so disgusted with your commercial that it would have never seen the light of day!”

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“We wish you therapy for your mental health issues to think this was even funny in the first place,” wrote another customer. “You guys are really repulsive.”

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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Texas governor busted sending racist call-to-arms a day before El Paso attack: ‘take matters into our own hands’

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On Thursday, Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) tweeted out a message of unity and promised to work to reduce violence in his state, in the wake of the shooting in El Paso that left 22 dead and dozens more injured:

Today we had hearings responding to the tragic shooting in El Paso.

We focused on community healing, combating domestic terrorism, reducing hateful ideologies, & keeping guns out of hands of deranged killers while respecting 2nd Amendment rights.

We’ll keep TX safe.#txlege pic.twitter.com/ymct4aiSgK

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Facebook bans far-right website from pro-Trump advertising after they try to skirt transparency rules

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On Thursday, NBC News reported that Facebook has banned the Epoch Times from placing political advertisements, after the right-wing website tried to conceal its multimillion-dollar dark money streams and get around the social network's political advertising transparency rules in its propaganda supporting President Donald Trump.

The Epoch Times had tried to skirt rules by running ads under puppet names like "Honest Paper" and "Pure American Journalism," confusing users about who was really behind the ads.

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GOP leaders are pressuring Kansas Republican to resign from Congress immediately: report

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On Thursday, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported that Republicans in Kansas and Washington are pressuring Rep. Steve Watkins (R-KS) to step down after just eight months in office.

It is currently unclear why they are calling for his resignation.

Watkins has thus far given no indications he will leave office. His spokesman Jim Joice stated that he has no plans to resign, and disputed the idea that Republican officials are pressuring him to do so, but acknowledged there have been conversations around the topic.

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