I learned about sweatshops towards the end of junior high and I remember being deeply troubled. A burgeoning activist, I decided to boycott all clothing stores that sold products made in sweatshops. A quick AOL internet search (#old) revealed that my boycott would actually be incredibly difficult — if not impossible — given that I did not have my own money, transportation or sewing skills. The boycott was abandoned. With the exception of the fair trade purchasing when I do when it’s convenient, it hasn’t reared its head since.
Boycotting Hobby Lobby, however, is easy. The first reason is that I’ve never actually laid eyes on one. Frankly, I didn’t know it existed before they took it upon themselves to save all the unborn fetuses of crafty shift-workers of America. There is only one Hobby Lobby in my hometown San Diego, and it’s about an hour’s drive from my family home. The same is true in Boston, the other American city in which I’ve dwelled. In my current home of Melbourne, Australia, there is literally not a Hobby Lobby in the hemisphere. So you see, my boycott is a bit ridiculous but also VERY MEANINGFUL, you know?
I say this because I know that a boycott can be inconvenient. As the tidal wave of shit that is the recent Supreme Court decision drifts further into the past, it will seem less important to drive an extra 10 minutes to buy your yarn. Keep reading »
By now you’ve probably heard that Abercrombie & Fitch is an exceedingly offensive company that aims to create clothes exclusively for the young people that CEO Mike Jeffries deems “cool.” But did you know that A&F has a long history of sexism, too? As The Huffington Post explains, back in 2005, activist Heather Arnet of the independent advocacy group, The Women and Girls Foundation, escorted 16 teenage girls to Abercrombie’s headquarters to protest a line of — surprise! – offensive T-shirts. The girls had decided to stage a boycott, affectionately named “girlcott,” of T-shirts which pit women against each other, baring phrases such as “I had a nightmare I was a brunette,” “Blondes are adored, brunettes are ignored,” and “Do I make you look fat?” Keep reading »
Talk about sticking it to the man. A group of 26 women in Saudi Arabia are now “lingerie graduates.” At a 10-day retreat led by an Australian woman, the group spent 40 hours learning how to correctly fit a bra, display merchandise, and deal with customers. Victoria’s Secret even donated bras to help out with the undie education.
So why was this training needed? In Saudi Arabia, only men can work at malls, meaning that most lingerie stores are staffed by dudes. And come on, who wants their chest measured by some fumbling man who doesn’t know what he’s doing? Plus, there are no fitting rooms in Saudi stores because a woman is prohibited to undress outside her home. Keep reading »