Old Navy’s Sexist T-Shirts Strike Again, This Time Belittling The New ‘Ghostbusters’
The all-female version of Ghostbusters was supposed to be a good thing for women, but almost all of the fallout from the film has led to a lot more sexist bullshit, like men complaining about the all-female casting or harassing Leslie Jones on Twitter. Unfortunately, it goes deeper than whiny, terrible men on the internet. Like this sexist Old Navy t-shirt for kids that comes in two versions. For boys, there’s a cute heather grey tee that has the Ghostbusters logo and no copy. The girls version on the other hand needs some explaining since the pink tee says “Ghostbuster In Training.” Because girls can’t just be whatever they want — they have to work all that much harder to do it (and then get paid less for it).
Of course, it’s a T-shirt, so you could easily go grab one for a toddler girl from the boys’ section and make her a Ghostbuster if that’s what she wants. But who approved this message in the first place? Gender neutral clothes and toys should be something that every retailer is starting to make a priority, because it’s getting pretty old that girls and boys don’t get the same message that they can be anything.
This isn’t the first time that Old Navy has disappointed, either.
Check out this shirt that reads, “Boys Will Be Boys,” which is just a terrible message. Boys aren’t terrible, but when we say “boys will be boys” to little boys, we’re telling them that they get a free pass to do whatever they want because of their gender. It’s basically a T-shirt promoting rape culture and bad, outdated gender stereotypes.
Last year, the company got into trouble for making a shirt for girls that said “Young Aspiring Astronaut” or “Young Aspiring President,” which was all well and good, except the graphic had crossed out “Artist” to make their feminist point. There’s nothing wrong with being an artist, Old Navy.
The company’s not just sexist; it’s also sizeist. The clothing retailer was under heat in 2014 for charging different prices for plus sized clothing — even now, the same pair of “Rockstar” jeans varies in price depending on what tab you’re shopping under on the webpage. Regular sizes are $24.95 and plus sizes are just over $30. At the time, Old Navy released a statement saying, “While we don’t make more money on our plus-size line, our plus-size clothes cost more because we invest more in them.” Meh. If that’s the argument, there should be different prices for jeans depending on what size you buy no matter what section of the store they’re in (but not really because that would be awful).
It’s a shame retailers can’t wise up and get creative when it comes to the clothes they make for kids. Or at least the editorial process needs to tighten up. No one wants to be a Ghostbuster in training.