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An Open Letter To Urban Outfitters

June 3, 2010

Dear Urban Outfitters,

We used to have a normal relationship. You gave me delicate, pretty clothes and accessories and in return I gave you stupid amounts of money. Sure, you’re often overpriced, but its not the easiest thing to find great-fitting clothes nowadays.

Over the past year though, I’ve had to avoid you, in case you haven’t noticed. I didn’t buy any books or artwork from you during the holiday season, and with summer trudging up I haven’t been mingling among your newest line of Gladiator sandals.

Why oh why have I had to tear myself away from our humble relationship? The same reason I loved you in the first place, your clothes.

First, you decide that gay rights blow. It’s no secret your company CEO Mr. Hayne is staunchly conservative and has been in huge $upport of politicians working against same-sex rights over the years. Just this past year, you decided that a “I Support Same Sex Marriage” shirt was ‘too controversial’ for your store and had it pulled after only a week of sales.

But I guess those darn gays are the problem and that’s whats controversial, not the shirt that proclaims it’s up to daddy dearest to ‘protect’ his daughter’s virginity. I guess gay people are way worse than the age-old disgusting practice of a father controlling his daughter’s virginity as if she’s an object just there for a dowry.

Finally, today, you have sealed our break-up, UO. Your new “Eat Less” shirt, modeled on what looks to be an under-weight pre-pubescent child. Sure, I could give you the benefit of the doubt and think its some sort of Zen bullshit about eating only until your full or some starving-for-your-religion thing, but after your string of craptacular shirts I’m going to go ahead and call this a pro-anorexia piece of shit shirt.

I won’t judge those who continue going back to you, but I’m washing my hands clean of your increasingly ridiculous clothing.

Sincerely,

Dr. Sangfroid

Note: Many people have said these t-shirts are just ‘ironic’ and all a parody of the issues they represent, which would be fine and dandy if it were true. UO has a long history of racist and sexist products, and their owner Richard Haynes has a long history of opposing unionized labour, same-sex rights, and women’s rights. I don’t feel right about my money being put into a system that goes right back into another system that supports hate.

Update: It looks like all the backlash has caused UO to pull the ‘Eat Less’ shirt from sales, but no formal notice or apology has been posted.

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. June 3, 2010 11:26 pm

    I love this.

  2. Sean permalink
    June 4, 2010 5:43 am

    Uhh, unionized labor should be avoided. I agree with your other two points.

    • COOLNAME permalink
      November 1, 2010 2:59 am

      Why should unionized labour be avoided? Do you understand that the labourers who want to form unions are usually the ones who are being denied rights? They’re taking action to get ethical treatment, whatever that may be… and if they aren’t allowed to form unions, it’s a sweatshop

    • Laura permalink
      November 26, 2010 5:20 am

      Uh a derrrrrrrrrrr

  3. June 7, 2010 1:44 am

    Good article. Some of their stuff is ridiculous. Luckily, as a larger woman, I probably couldn’t find anything there to wear if I wanted to. I do agree with your previous commenter though, unionized labor is a bad thing, not good, if only for paying the union fees alone. Most people can’t afford yet another omission from their pay checks.

    • lynx permalink
      November 20, 2010 1:43 pm

      if they had a union they’d make more money. things like the 8 hour day, minimum wages, and other laws that protect workers were bought with the blood of union workers who fought for their rights. bosses and their pet politicians didn’t just decide to institute them out of kindness, people died for the rights you take for granted. the fact that in modern america many labor unions have sold out to the bosses and no longer represent the workers isn’t a refutation of unions, it’s a representation of the afl-cio and a wake up call for the rest of america’s workers that it’s time to build a new independent labor movement.

      and fuck urban outfitters.

  4. spedrosa82 permalink
    June 9, 2010 5:28 pm

    I love how money (or fear or not having as much) is always the reason for “doing the right thing.” Great entry!

  5. blackwatertown permalink
    June 9, 2010 6:23 pm

    Best and necessary way to make your point – stop funding them.

  6. The Short Lady permalink
    June 13, 2010 1:29 am

    I take it the previous anti-union commenters are willing to give up the things the union movement has given all people who work for someone other than themself-helping to pass laws ending child labor, establishing the eight-hour day, protecting workers’ safety and health and helping create Social Security, unemployment insurance and the minimum wage.

    Corporations did not willingly give these things to workers. Unless you can say you would willing do without these things, that unions fought for and union members died for, then perhaps you should educate yourself about the union movement.

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