Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Old Navy (sort of) supports LGBT pride

  Old Navy has a different sort of flag tee available this year, and it is causing quite a stir...

Old Navy is making a strong effort to support the LGBT community with their latest set of tees, with Pride designs for the whole family. The best part is that 10% of each sale goes to support the It Gets Better Project, which is a campaign that was started by Dan Savage after several gay teens committed suicide due to excessive bullying. They have such a strong message for LGBT youth, that there are others out there who have experienced the same thing, that the bullying does go away, and it does get better.

I was very excited when I found out about the tees. Although I am not gay, I was very much looking forward to purchasing one myself. I fully believe that every person on the planet deserves to find love, and that no one else should tell them where to find it. Would you tell a white person that they can't marry a black person? (doesn't it seem crazy that this only became legal in the US in 1967? Look at Heidi Klum and Seal, they're so sweet and happy together it's ridiculous). How about telling someone in their 60s that they can't marry someone in their 30s? (or watch Harold and Maude, that's 20s-ish and 79...big age gap there). So why tell a man that he can't marry a man, or tell a woman that she can't marry a woman? We don't choose who we love, it just happens.

Although Old Navy seems to be making a step in the right direction, it looks like they haven't fully committed to the cause. I hadn't even heard about them (even though I work at Old Navy) until my father-in-law mentioned something he saw on the news about the shirts. Unfortunately the tees will only be available in 26 stores nationwide, and will not be available online (which is completely stupid, those things would sell like hotcakes). In fact, you can't even find any "official" information on the campaign except through this Facebook page. It almost seems like Old Navy is trying to fly under the radar with this one, so as to not offend anyone and *gasp* potentially lose business.

There is something that can be done, however. A petition has been started (which I have already signed) to let Old Navy know that the nation wants to be able to purchase these shirts and support the LGBT community. Even if it doesn't get a million signatures, or Old Navy doesn't release the shirts to all the stores, hopefully they will still see the petition and realize that lots people care. Not just people in urban areas with large gay populations.

So listen up, Old Navy and Gap Inc., while the concept of the shirts is awesome, your strategy is flawed, so you need to kick it up a notch and release them to the whole United States! Stand up for what is right, and when you do it, make sure you stand all the way up, not just kind of half-stand then squat back down in your chair. Because is it really pride if you feel like you have to hide it?

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