Monday, June 17, 2013

A sweet victory over Urban Outfitters

As many of you know, I have been working my tail off for more than a month trying to get Urban Outfitters to pull prescription drug related merchandise that they were selling in their stores and on their website. (See my post Urban Outfitters: WTF???)

Countless e-mails to the CEO of the company, tons of Tweets, the creation of a Facebook page dedicated to the cause, a bevy of Facebook posts; that all paid off this past Friday, when Urban Outfitters announced that they were pulling the merchandise in question from their stores and website.

In the grand scheme of things, my role in this was very small. Much larger roles were served by The Partnership at, several state attorneys general, and the American Association of Poison Control Centers. But I do feel like my efforts helped, and I am enjoying the sweet taste of victory.

Although the statement issued by Urban Outfitters was disappointing--saying that these products were "misinterpreted by people who are not our customers"--the most important thing to me is that the merchandise is no longer for sale at UO.

This just goes to show you what can happen when a group of people band together for a cause. I am very grateful that teens and young people--the demographic of Urban Outfitters--will no longer be exposed to these products that make light of the misuse of prescription drugs.

I'm also pretty sure that Urban Outfitters CEO Richard Hayne will not miss getting e-mail from me every day.


  1. I realize that what I say will not change your opinion, and that is not my intention. I will say though that, while I respect and admire so much of what you do, I don't see the big issue about this. If you like a product, buy it. If you don't like it, don't buy it. Personally, I found your Unfuck the World t-shirt and bumper sticker to be more offensive than any of these Urban Outfitters items.

    I still think you are awesome though.

  2. Well, it was a big enough issue for 23 state attorneys general and the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) to get involved. The AAPCC said in a statement: "Poison centers work very hard to prevent poisonings. Unfortunately, the pint glasses, flasks and shot glasses designed to look like prescription pill bottles made light of a very serious issue – prescription drug abuse and misuse." Plus, I believe that exposing teens and young adults to these kinds of products can send the wrong message. Lastly, I'm sorry you were offended by my "Unfuck the World" shirt and bumper sticker. UTW is a great non-profit organization that aims to inspire everyday people around the world to take positive ACTION towards making this world a better place. This planet is a messed up place. Any organization that tries to fix that has my support. Try looking beyond the "F" word and understanding the message.

    Not everyone agrees with everyone else. That's what makes the world go around. Your opinion is welcome here anytime.

  3. No need to apologize, and I appreciate the thoughtful response. I wish good things for you and your family!