Opinion: Dear Mr. Abercrombie Man

Paige Esterly, Author

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The CEO of popular clothing company Abercrombie & Fitch recently announced that the store's lack of plus sized clothing stems from his desire to market clothing to "pretty" people exclusively. His remarks were met with uproar and protests around the country. Photo by Paige Esterly.

The CEO of popular clothing company Abercrombie & Fitch recently announced that the store’s lack of plus sized clothing stems from his desire to market clothing to “pretty” people exclusively. His remarks were met with uproar and protests around the country. Photo by Paige Esterly.

Dear Michael Jeffries, CEO of Abercrombie & Fitch:

My name is Paige Esterly, a junior at Palo Alto High School, and I am here to represent the outraged voices of high schoolers (and middle schoolers, and adults, and just about everyone) regarding your recent announcement that big is not, indeed, beautiful, that those who are not a size zero cannot, and never will, have friends and that if you are shorter than five-nine you (apparently) are not fit to step inside an Abercrombie & Fitch store.

Well, to put it quite bluntly, you are wrong. You are wrong on so, so many levels.

Now, one can merely speculate on just how these warped, disgusting ideas grew inside your head to begin with, and guess at what on earth made you think it would be a good idea to voice said warped, disgusting ideas to the public. It is unrealistic to expect girls to all be 5-foot-10 and weigh 110 pounds, so if that is the demographic you are looking for, I hear Barbie is looking for a new wardrobe manager (Barbie’s hip-to-waist ratio is .56, while the average woman comes in at about .8, according to journalist Nina Golgowski).

By producing such doll-sized clothes, you force young people everywhere to feel bad about their weight, body image and, sadly, their self-worth. To make matters worse, by proclaiming that those who do not fit your size demographics must not fit your company’s social demographics either, you encourage the idea that beauty is dependent on size, and that’ s really all that matters. No matter how nice, smart or funny a person may be, if they are not beautiful and skinny apparently their money is not good enough for you. By following this business path you are cheating yourself out of profit and people across the country out of their own self-esteem.

Okay, Mr. Abercrombie Man, here is the deal. Weight does not dictate beauty, beauty does not dictate popularity, and popularity, most certainly, does not dictate happiness.

Sincerely,

Paige Esterly