Oh watch out, this guy is blogging about current events like he knows what he’s talking about!
So Abercrombie & Fitch’s CEO, Mike Jeffries, has come out and stated plainly that they do not carry the larger sizes for a reason. Their reason being that they do not want larger “unattractive people” wearing their clothing. Does this guy really have the right (and I know no one has this right) to make a call on what constitutes attractiveness?? I mean look at him! As a person on the internet so succinctly put it “He looks like an albino orc”. Putting that aside for now (we will get back to it later), I have some issues to express my opinion on.
First and foremost, I have no issues with a company taking a stand on an issue, even if the issue is against my own philosophy. Examples of this include Oreo’s support of gay marriage, the JCPenny ads featuring same sex couples, or even Chic-Fil-A’s stance on gay marriage (NOTE: as I said I do not agree with the stance, but they are free to take a stance (being a company run by Christians who hold to these beliefs (I do know they are not representative as Christians as a whole)) even if I feel it’s wrong as long as they do not start to discriminate). Company CEO’s should be allowed to take a stance on matters that they feel warrant a stance. That being said, they damn well better be prepared to deal with the backlash from their stance. Every coin has two sides, equal and opposite reaction, other common saying pertaining to this situation.
I want to eat this. I have wanted to eat this since the day I first saw it.
I hang out on a site where plenty of people condemn Mike Jeffries decision, but I have been seeing some support of his company’s right to take a stand on these matters. Again, as previously stated, I have no issues with people having something the believe in. I do take issue with the forthright statement that it is specifically because he doesn’t like fat people and is, in a way, refusing their patronage. Those in support of the company’s stance have also expressed that it is a company that is refusing to support America’s obesity problem. That is just not true. A company not supporting the obesity problem is donating to programs for fitness or running ad campaigns that advocate striving for an active lifestyle, even if you think you don’t fit the caste. That is helping, not what Abercrombie & Fitch is doing.
Sadly, I am willing to conceded a bit because it is the point of clothing retailers like that to cater to a style. My favorite name brand retail store is Guess and they do mostly trendy but not preppy clothes. They do not carry sizes larger than a large and use ridiculously over sexed models in their ad campaigns. It is their style, they have earned my patronage, and if it were different I would not shop there. The difference being that they have not publicly condemned a whole portion of the population. That’s just an asshole move that is bound to stir up conflict and can only be a play to gain publicity. As they say, there is no bad publicity (it looks like this is shifting in the modern world, but it has yet to truly change).
I believe I have made it clear up to this point that I dislike statements, not stances. Here are a few things the CEO has said publicly about his company:
“In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids.”
“Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong”
“Abercrombie is only interested in people with washboard stomachs who look like they’re about to jump on a surfboard”
“I don’t want our core customers to see people who aren’t as hot as them wearing our clothing.”
“I think that what we represent sexually is healthy. It’s playful. It’s not dark. It’s not degrading! And it’s not gay, and it’s not straight, and it’s not black, and it’s not white. It’s not about any labels. That would be cynical, and we’re not cynical! It’s all depicting this wonderful camaraderie, friendship, and playfulness that exist in this generation and, candidly, does not exist in the older generation.”
“Dude, I’m not an old fart who wears his jeans up at his shoulders.”
STATEMENTS THAT PISS ME OFF!! All of these are high school age thinking and I’m an adult now (??) and they sound fucking stupid. Lets start from the top, a simple truth. It is true that popularity in high school is not evenly distributed, but Jeffries would have it thought that popularity is a measure of worth. This is damaging to the whole world of kids in their developmental stages and is a slippery step for some toward the big issue that ALWAYS concerns me, self-harm.
The second statement is just as bad. It outright states that if you do not fit their mold of attractiveness you must not be American, you must be negative, you must be lonely, and you must be an outcast. The final part actually makes my soul hurt. If you do not belong in Abercrombie clothing, there is nothing you can do. It is hopeless and you cannot improve your lot in life if it is already bad.
Back to his other statements. If he wants ridiculously toned people likely to make use of a surfboard, the company should definitely stop selling in Ohio. They better not have any outlets in North Dakota. The Rockies are out. Most of Texas gone. Indiana?? Forget about it. Where does he expect these states to have enough regular surfing to warrant the whole customer base owning surfboards?? Am I being too literal?? Yes, but if you’re going to make bigoted and discriminatory statements, stick to your guns or go the fuck home because your argument is full of holes at that point. Another issue I take with this, small medium and large people overall lack washboard stomachs. I work out regularly and my tummy could hardly qualify as toned. That statement should really offend everyone.
I suppose ND could have some surfers.
Up next: Not wanting to see ugly people! Mike Jeffries, you should probably get yourself fitted for a face bag or a placard that says hypocrite. Two issues here: 1. It implies that the body is the source of attractiveness and the face nor the personality (as I’ve expressed I find strong women sexy as hell) nor anything else is any source of hotness. 2. In general wanting to either sweep people under the rug or get rid of them because they do not fit your model of what is good has historically turned out to be a pretty bad move.Now I’m not putting this on the same level as historical atrocities, but the parallel is pretty plain to see.
Is he really saying their ad campaigns are not very white and very heterosexual?? Is he really saying it’s not about labels when he has created two very iron clad labels into which his statements have sorted the entirety of people?? Is he really saying that all attractive people are nice and have lots of strong friendships?? Is he really saying our sexuality, as a whole, is in a healthy state?? Is he really saying, having lived through the 60′s, that no older generation has had fun??
The rhetorical question portion of this post is done now…
Finally, we arrive at a fundamentally flawed self image that may in fact be the root of all of the shit I’ve been complaining about this whole time. He still sees himself as a kid. He never left high school where the entire world is black and white, so he doesn’t see the purples, blues, oranges, and greens that mature folks see every day of their lives. And for this, I pity him. He’s a sad 68 year old little boy who still thinks the world should be as he wants it and anything else is unacceptable.
Also, does anyone else think he looks like Ron White??
P.S. I have just been informed that they burn unsold stock?? What shit is this??