by Courtney Helmuth
Over the years there have been several controversies concerning the tee shirt design choices by Urban Outfitters. The most recent of these controversies surfaced when Urban Outfitters began selling a faux blood-splattered “Vintage Kent State Sweatshirt.” The sweatshirt was interpreted as a reference to the 1970’s Kent State Massacre, where four students were shot and killed during a Vietnam War protest.
The sweatshirt now says that it is sold out after several complaints and campaigns against the sweatshirt. Urban Outfitters then publicly apologized for any offense, saying that the sweatshirt was not altered and the color was natural for discoloration.
Another extreme controversy surrounding Urban Outfitters began when they started selling a v-neck tee shirt with the words “Eat Less” on the front. After several campaigns about how this shirt promoted eating disorders, Urban Outfitters pulled the shirt and made a public apology. However, this shirt still remained in stores until the stock sold out.
Urban Outfitters has been known for several other ethical and racial controversies such as same-sex marriage shirts. These shirts started selling around the time of California’s vote on same-sex marriage . However, this shirt was then pulled a week later because of “bad press.”