Urban Outfitters apologizes for offensive Kent State sweatshirt

September 18, 2014

Clothing retailer Urban Outfitters has apologized in the wake of a public backlash against the sale of a Kent State University sweatshirt that appeared to be covered in blood stains. Kent State was the site of a 1970 shooting in which members of the Ohio National Guard opened fire on unarmed student protestors, killing 4. Upon learning of the shirt, Kent State said “we take great offense to a company using our pain for their publicity and profit. This item is beyond poor taste and trivializes a loss of life that still hurts the Kent State community today.” Urban Outfitters said that it “sincerely apologizes for any offence our Vintage Kent State Sweatshirt may have caused … We deeply regret that this item was perceived negatively and we have removed it immediately from our website to avoid further upset.” The company also said that the sweatshirt was not intended to depict blood stains but was “sun-faded.” It further claimed that the holes near the stains in the shirt were the result of age and wear and were not intended to represent bullet holes. Toronto Star (1) | Toronto Star (2) | National Post