Landon’s Editorial: Why You Shouldn’t Promote the “Abercrombie & Fitch for the Homeless” Campaign
Over the past few days, a viral video has been circulating where a comedian buys Abercrombie & Fitch clothes, and distributes them to homeless people. He's calling the campaign "Fitch The Homeless" and it's designed to hurt the Abercrombie brand.
It's his response to a minor recent scandal where the CEO of Abercrombie said the company doesn't make extra large sizes, because they only want "cool kids" wearing their clothes. That's a pretty lame thing to say for a bunch of reasons, and yeah . . . Abercrombie sucks. But this isn't the answer.
Here's why: The "Fitch the Homeless" campaign only 'works' as a superficial protest if you assume the following underlying principle: The homeless are disgusting and sub-human.
In the video, the comedian discusses "changing the brand" of Abercrombie by associating it with the homeless. In other words, TRASHING the brand because anything associated with the homeless is inherently repulsive to the rest of us.
He does it under the guise of clothing the homeless. But the homeless aren't props for your social causes. They're human beings.
The people behind Bumfights and Bumvertising also were "helping" the homeless by having desperate people trade their last shreds of dignity for money. In this case, the homeless are trading that dignity for clothes they desperately need.
If you want to help the homeless, help the homeless. There are plenty of ways to do it without mocking and dehumanizing them in the process.