A letter to Urban Outfitters

September 25th, 2014


To my loyal readers, I come to you today with a broken heart. As a self-proclaimed lover of fashion and art, I am troubled. A store where I used to spend my spare hours perusing its website, essentially foaming at the mouth at the hipster-esque, jaw-dropping, eye-catching apparel, has lost my trust, respect and the dollars I was planning on spending when I paid off the large amount of college debt I’ve accumulated.


Ah yes, Urban Outfitters, you have wronged the good of society.


To express my hate, disgust and utter dismay, I have drafted a letter.


Dear Urban Outfitters,




Did you really believe selling a blood-stained, Kent State University sweatshirt wouldn’t be offensive to Kent State alumni, the surrounding community and people with souls?  Sure, I believe you that your designers never put two and two together. I’m sure they said, “Let’s totally sell a sweatshirt advertising a random college – and I like the color red. Let’s throw some red on there. It’s not like I’ve researched this idea. Or like I’m a professional designer or anything.”


Sure, of course that’s what you thought. I totally believe you [insert sarcastic eye roll here].


I highly doubt it was unintentional. And if it was, that’s just sad. Apparently you don’t hire the brightest crayons in the box.


Also, can I just say that $129 for a sweatshirt is a tad pricey? If you want to insult the nation by unearthing dark, pent-up emotions from the 1970 massacre where people lost their lives, you might as well discount it a teeny bit. For goodness sakes, you’re toying around with a massacre here, Urban Outfitters. Four unarmed students were killed by the Ohio National Guard when they were protesting for peace. Show some respect.


As the great comedic duo, Seth Meyers and Amy Poehler, would say, “Really?”


Oh, I’m sorry. It’s all about profit, right?


You’re disgusting, Urban Outfitters.


You have over 2,000 pieces of apparel under the women’s section on your website. Can you try to not let something as heartbreaking as a sweatshirt showing the bloodshed of young, innocent lives who died for peace slip through the cracks. Please and thank you.


I understand edgy is cool and all of that. You do a great job with your high-fashioned, vintage pieces that don’t offend an entire nation.


However, there have been one too many offensive clothing items that have been released within the past year.


Yes, I was slightly taken aback by the “Jesus, I’m drunk” T-shirt. I don’t usually picture my Lord and Savior holding a brewski. I’m not sure if it’s the Catholic school girl in me, or just the fact that I have a moral conscience, but I’m going to say that that wasn’t a smart move, guys. I don’t care if you don’t believe in Jesus. Everyone has the right to their own opinion. But it’s insulting, anti-religious and essentially making fun of something many people regard as the center of their lives.


Okay, I understand they don’t have to buy the product, but isn’t the point to sell products – not mass-produce overpriced items where some of them just flat out cross the line.


And while I have your attention, what was with the crop top with the word “depression” branded over and over again on every inch? Maybe you were trying to make a statement about depression awareness, but you seemed to fail.


Also, I just want to say I won’t be buying your shirt that says “Eat Less” anytime soon. I’m not a huge fan of anorexia, believe it or not. Shocking, right?


You shook a nation. And for what? To make a profit? A vulgar statement?


As a young consumer with a passion for fashion, you tore my heart in two. You were a leader in cutting-edge fashion, and I looked up to you. But, not anymore. The spark you breathed into your innovative designs and artwork is gone. It’s like when I found out Santa wasn’t real (If you didn’t already know that, I’m sorry to burst your bubble). It’s like when my first true love in pre-school said he wanted to see other people.


In all seriousness, you crossed a line. And, the worst part is that the damage, hurt and emotional stress you put people through isn’t going to be mended with one little apologetic statement.


Good luck, Urban Outfitters. You have your work cut out for you.




Alexandra E. Higl