Friday, March 23, 2012

Abercrombie & Glitch: Fake Abercrombie Website Brings Back its Racist Past

An impostor Abercrombie & Fitch website fooled consumers by selling fake "Abercrombie & Fitch N***er Brown Pants." Links to the website quickly went viral thanks to the social media network Facebook, and A&F soon shut down the fake website.

But there is a reason so many people believed the website was real.  

We can't forget your racist hiring policies and the offensive products you were selling just a few years back, Abercrombie.

Let's review Abercromie's history:

1. Hiring only white people. In 2009, A&F settled a $40 million class action lawsuit for forcing all minority employees to work in the stock room while allowing white employees to be on the sales floor. CBS News reports that a former A&F employee stated, "A corporate official had pointed to an Abercrombie poster and told our management at our store, 'You need to have more staff that looks like this.' And it was a white Caucasian male on that poster."

2. Selling Racist t-shirts using pseudo-Chinese character font. I can't imagine who approved the Two Wongs Can Make it White, Abercrombie & Fitch T-Shirt. In April 2002, A&F launched a line of racist shirts with offensive Asian stereotypes. The shirts featured Asian caricatures engaging in forced stereotypes of kung fu fighting and offensive religious references to Buddha. In response to these shirts, Los Angeles based cartoonist and "Angry Little Asian Girl" creator Lela Lee told the LA Times, "We're used to depictions of Asians as kung-fu fighting, fortune-cookie-speaking, slanty-eyed, bucktooth servants. We're really tired of it."

3. Selling Sexist t-shirts. Back in 2005, A&F produced sexist shirts and received some push-back from teen groups who staged "girlcotts." A&F shirts had slogans such as, "I had a nightmare I was a brunette" and "Who needs brains when you have these?" printed across the chest.

4. Sexualizing young girls.  And let's not forget about the A&F "push up padding" bikinis for children that came out in 2011. Enough said.

Given Abercrombie's sordid history, it was not implausible to believe the N-word pants were real. Needless to say, SBW maintains its Two Person Boycott of that store. We encourage you to join us.