Another bloody mess from Urban Outfitters: The Kent State sweatshirt

Home S&S Opinion Another bloody mess from Urban Outfitters: The Kent State sweatshirt
Another bloody mess from Urban Outfitters: The Kent State sweatshirt
The controversial sweatshirt before it was taken down from the website (Courtesy of Cameron Diiorio/

Staff Writer

Among the many controversial clothes that Urban Outfitters has sold, the Kent State Sweatshirt definitely tops the charts in terms of its offensiveness. The sweatshirt, which sold for $129 until it was taken down on September 15, was a “vintage” crewneck from Kent State University, Ohio.

In 1970, four people were killed in a famous anti-Vietnam protest at Kent State. Nearly 35 years later, Urban Outfitters, which is very well known for its controversial and overpriced clothing, released this sweatshirt with blood stains and bullet holes. Urban Outfitters claimed that the blood stain was a “tie-dye design” and that the bullet holes were “rips in clothing.” After many complaints from outraged online shoppers, Urban Outfitters apologized and took the sweatshirt down.

Over the years, Urban Outfitters has released other controversial clothing and promoted eating disorders, depression and other very serious issues that should not be plastered on clothing without a second thought.

In 2006, Urban Outfitters released a size two tank top with the words “Eat Less” in curly pink print. Such glorification of eating disorders is one of the reasons that many teenage girls nowadays suffer from anorexia and bulimia: because models wearing these types of clothing tell girls that it is acceptable to suffer as such.

Another highly inappropriate shirt that Urban Outfitters released was a white crop top with the word “depression” emblazoned on it in different sized fonts. After complaints from those who felt that it was just plain wrong, the shirt was taken off the market on January 5 this year.

Urban Outfitters addresses issues with its clothing only after public outcry against its offensive and unethical clothes escalates. Urban Outfitters’ repeated offenses demonstrate that it does not have an understanding of what is considered offensive to the general public. In the future, Urban Outfitters should be more sensitive and should modifyits clothing to meet acceptable standards.

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