by Gustavo Torrez
Congratulations Everyone… It appears that the shirt has been removed from American Apparels site… We obviously are going to keep our eye on this one but this is truly a success… I think this was such a great collaborative effort and love the power of our movement. Thank you to everyone who responded, and to all the folks in CA who shared this with everyone…
Thanks to some amazing Advocates in CA (ie. Brian Davis, Project Director of Freedom From Tobacco in San Francisco and his camp), it has been brought to our attention that American Apparel is actually selling a Newport Shirt… REALLY?
I am sure you might be as confused as I was when this came across my desk.
American Apparel is famous for supporting the Gays… When Prop 8 (AKA Prop H8te) was passed in 2008 in CA, American Apparel took a stand and printed a few hundred shirts with the now famous “Legalize Gay” Branding. Sweeping the Nation Legalize Gay apparel is a household item for many…
American Apparel states that many of their staff identifies as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender and their rational for the Legalize Gay campaign was a way to show their vocal support for their staff. Companies like American Apparel are few and far between… Not only are they are a company who cares about LGBT issues, The are all about being made in the USA, which is huge! BYT with their new Newport shirts its leaves me to wonder how much they really care about our community.
The tobacco industry spends millions in marketing toward us, and now American Apparel is going to help them in their marketing efforts… I am shocked to see something like this from an amazing company like American Apparel… I think to myself, are they are actually going to contribute to a growing problem in our community and do some of the tobacco industries dirty work for them?
I am going to give American Apparel the benefit of the doubt, maybe they did not realize that this was such a problem in the LGBT community. So, today I am going to email them the following:
As many tobacco control advocates know smoking rates within our communities (LGBT individuals) range from 35-200% higher than the general population. We know the tobacco industry is aggressively targeting our communities and has identified us as a “venerable market”. If you look at any major LGBT publication across the country today you will see some of the industries marketing practices, as they are trying to undermine our cessation efforts as we try to help our communities break the nicotine habit. Selling a product such as the Newport shirt is leaves me to wonder how much you care about our community… As we are still fighting for equal rights, we are still fight for a stronger healthier community as well. We have to stand up from our oppression, and reject substances, and industries that hinder our voices… American Apparel, today you can continue your stance in support for our community by removing the Newport shirt from your line. This will not only show your support for the wellbeing of the LGBT communities, but your consumer base at large.
Today I implore you to do the same… Tell American Apparel to remove this shirt from their line… Take two minutes and click the link below to let your voice be heard…
Are you on twitter let them know there as well… @AmericanApparel share the link http://bit.ly/RemoveNewport or just cut a past the following: