Urban Outfitters, you have outdone yourselves. Your “Eat Less” shirt was offensive. So was your “Depression” shirt. Your parody shirt with the Star of David that Jewish Holocaust victims were forced to wear was also sick and cruel. And now what? Now you are mocking a school shooting?
For some ungodly reason, Urban Outfitters thought this shirt would be funny.
If you don’t go to or have never been to Kent State, you’ve probably still heard about what happened on May 4, 1970. It didn’t directly affect me, but it was huge. It was a really big deal for our country and the war going on at the time.
In only thirteen seconds, sixty-seven rounds were fired through the air. Four unarmed students were shot and killed. It changed the history of a small town in Ohio forever. Kent State University would never be the same.
This shooting was featured in magazines (Time), newspapers (New York Times), movies (Born on the Fourth of July), and songs (Ohio). If you’ve never heard it, take a listen to Neil Young’s song “Ohio.” If you have heard it and never really paid attention, listen again. Pay attention. “Tin soldiers and Nixon’s coming. We’re finally on our own. This summer I hear the drumming. Four dead in Ohio.”
People were horrified. And we didn’t forget. Walking on campus by where these shooting took place is… eerie. Walking near where those students’ bodies dropped… is sad and… frightening. It happened right here. We see it everyday. We are reminded everyday.
There is an entire building dedicated to educating visitors about what happened that afternoon. People come from very far away to learn about this. People take pictures. There are signs and explanations.
This was a terrible day. Historical, but terrible. The fear the students and faculty felt must have been unimaginable. Some professors talk about it, what it was like to be here when it happened. Some were students themselves. It may have happened over forty years ago, but that doesn’t mean it is irrelevant. People were injured. People were killed.
And we think this sweater is trendy and cool? We think it’s hipster? This is a joke? Well, we aren’t laughing. Fuck you, Urban Outfitters! We are Kent State!