Controversial Viral Video Tells Viewers to 'Fitch the Homeless' -- Joy Junction will Give Abercrombie & Fitch Clothing to Guests
Contact: Jeremy Reynalds, Joy Junction, 505-400-7145
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., May 18, 2013 /Christian Newswire/ -- Writer Greg Karber is giving Abercrombie & Fitch clothing to the homeless, and he's hoping others will join in.
According to Karber's YouTube viral video (www.youtube.com/watch?v=O95DBxnXiSo&feature=player_detailpage), it's his way of responding to recent reports about A&F CEO Mike Jeffries.
Jeffries has been in the news this week because he said that A&F clothes are for "cool kids" and are absolutely "exclusionary."
Karber's stance has plenty of detractors, with some homeless advocates saying he is making use of the homeless and "dehumanizing" them.
However, Joy Junction Founder and CEO Dr. Jeremy Reynalds said he doesn't agree with Karber's critics. "I see many of our homeless guests as being in the same category as those individuals whom Jeffries apparently doesn't want his stores to serve; they're marginalized and often scorned."
Reynalds continued, "I hope this video helps bring attention to the plight of the homeless, and brings donations to homeless agencies nationwide in what is often a very dry season for giving."
Joy Junction Transportation Manager Lisa Woodward (who was formerly homeless) said, "I believe ... that this response to Abercrombie & Fitch does help open the eyes of many blinded by the injustices done to the homeless, or anyone who is not within today's view of beautiful and worthy of simple respect and dignity."
She added, "Today's world sticks its collective nose up in the air to anyone who doesn't make a certain amount of money per year and is able to fit in size 5 clothing. In addition, the homeless themselves are seen as festering sores on the face of their view of the world and what it should be. Perhaps this gentleman and others like him can widen the view of those with blinders on."
Reynalds said some comments he has read said that Jeffries has a right for his brand to sell-or not-to whomever it wishes.
"That's true," Reynalds said, "And we also have a right to say what we think of the decisions made by Jeffries and A & F. With that in mind, we will be having a small giveaway of A& F clothes at Joy Junction on Sat. May 18 at about 11.45 a.m."
Karber's YouTube video touts his idea of giving Abercrombie clothing to the homeless. In the video, he buys A&F clothing from L.A. thrift shops and gives it away to people living on the streets of East Los Angeles.
There's also a growing controversy over the fact that A&F does not sell women's clothing above a size 10.
That's according to a Business Insider article (www.businessinsider.com/abercrombie-wants-thin-customers-2013-5#ixzz2TbafhVwQ), in which Robin Lewis, co-author of "The New Rules of Retail," was quoted as saying about Abercrombie & Fitch CEO Mike Jeffries, "He doesn't want larger people shopping in his store, he wants thin and beautiful people. He doesn't want his core customers to see people who aren't as hot as them wearing his clothing. People who wear his clothing should feel like they're one of the 'cool kids.'"
A 2006 Salon article (www.salon.com/2006/01/24/jeffries) quoted Jeffries as saying, "In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids," he told the site. "Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don't belong (in our clothes), and they can't belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely."
After Jeffries claimed his comments were taken out of context, an eonline article said, (www.eonline.com/news/416531/abercrombie-fitch-ceo-mike-jeffries-doesn-t-want-fat-customers-says-author-robin-lewis/news/416531/abercrombie-fitch-ceo-mike-jeffries-doesn-t-want-fat-customers-says-author-robin-lewis), "While Jeffries' quotes certainly shed light on the brand's ads, it's not clear how much Lewis' comments reflect his own opinions of A&F and how much they accurately reflected the brand's actual attitude."
Author Jennifer Chan continued, "But here's one thing we can all agree on: If that's the brand's true position, it's clearly going to alienate a lot of people."