Monday, June 3, 2013

Abercrombie and Fat

So, I should probably start by reposting old posts. However, I thought this was a pretty interesting development in the greater world, even if it isn't quite current events anymore. I'd love to know what you guys think.

A bunch of articles and opinions on the subject are featured below. Here is a quick overview of the story:
The CEO of the clothing store Abercrombie & Fitch, Mike Jeffries, stated that his store/brand refused to carry large sizes (XL and XXL) since the store was aimed at "attractive, all-American kids"  and intentionally excluded everyone else.
This infuriated a fair number of American female bloggers (bloggeuses? bloggettes? 'Blogger' just seems like a masculine-gendered noun to me.).
Reactions ensued.
One bloggess created a series of images starring a fat woman and a skinny man, seen here. (Not quite tznius)
Reactions ensued
One man, Greg Karber, began giving A&F's clothing away to homeless people, as explained in this video.
Reactions ensued.
Here are some of my reactions, in no particular order.

  • A&F wants to carve out a marketing niche and is doing so through generating outrage. It's like when a particular celebrity claims to be x, knowing that it will provoke a reaction. So why is everyone (including me) giving them this reaction?
  • Why can't I shop at stores like Torrid or Lane Bryant? Why can't I generate some outrage on behalf of my lack of shopping options? Y'know, 'cause us skinny folks feel excluded from the stores aimed at plus sized people.
  • Pretty is power. Pretty women are treated very differently than plain ones. Do the most vehement objections come from the women who feel excluded?
  • A&F doesn't care about the skinny people. All they care about is making money. They said it themselves. 
  • Why are fat people getting mad? Why aren't they changing their diet/exercise program? I get that losing weight is difficult, frustrating, and just plain old hard. I've done it. 
  • Take a look around the next time you're out in public in America. Skinny is dying. Most people nowadays are, at the least, comfortably padded. A size "small" today is comparable to a former "medium."  So...who can AF target? 
  • Do these shoppers have no other option? They don't need to shop there. At least, I hope not. It's a pretty expensive store. 
  • Why should A&F cater to you, you special widdle snowflake? You don't like them? Then don't give them your money! Why are you entitled to demand that a store, which admits to catering to a certain demographic, however tastelessly expressed, should consider you a part of their demographic? Go shop at a competing brand's store. Hit up your friendly local thrift shop. Learn to sew.
  • The homeless only matter if you're making a point? Nothing in society is lower than a homeless person? That, right there, that is real consideration for the value of human dignity. I hope that Mike Jeffries is proud of himself. I am appalled. 
  • A&F's target demographic is actually young men. Aside from Karber, where is the collectively blogged outrage of the menfolk? Buehler? Buehler...?
  • Why is the countering photography campaign just a picture of a fat woman and a skinny man? Why not an overweight gentleman and a svelte dame? Oh right, "Family Guy" is already on television.
  • I've never shopped there. Entering a dimly lit hallway, under the gaze of a half-dressed young man - my mama raised me better than that. ;) Actually, I just think that their clothes are severely overpriced, and those photos at the entrance scare me. 

How does something like this get more of a reaction than, say, nuclear developments in North Korea and/or Iran? Or the plight of the homeless in general? Or the chemicals in our food and cosmetics?

?!

I've started off with this because this is a fairly current event, and I think it says a lot. What do you all think?

Sheker hachen, hevel hayofi...

Be well,

Sparrow

_______

Sources:

The original story:
Some of the reactions:

On the plus size bloggeree:
Karber's Campaign:

6 comments:

  1. One more point: clothes for heavy people use more material = less cost effective.

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    1. Very true. I hadn't even thought of that!

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  2. Fat men never really seem to be offended by these sort of things. It's usually the women who get outraged about this and many other similar things. I'm unsure why. Again, it's a business. Most places don't have my Size men's jeans due to my hieght (or lack there of) so I just shop elsewhere. This seems to me to be the equivalent of a liberal demanding fox news support thier views. You don't like it? Dont watch it. (and besides, fox is conservative purely for money. A conservative news channel with shows like hannity and glen beck get better ratings than a liberal equivilant. It's all about the money.)

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  3. I'm always amazed at the amount of research you put into your posts. All those links! :)

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