Prop 8: Three More Boycott Targets

Just learned of three stores — one I’ve shopped in the past — whose earnings, at least in part, went to anti-GLBT candidates and to support California’s discriminatory Proposition 8: Urban Outfitter, Free People, and Anthropologie. All are owned by a one-time lefty and currently avowed right-wing capitalist named Richard Hayne.

From Wikipedia:

Richard Hayne is the president of Urban Outfitters, a chain of clothing retailers. At a net worth of $1.8 billion, Hayne is the #262 richest person in the U.S. according to the 2008 Forbes 400 list, a ranking of the 400 richest Americans by net worth. … He founded Urban Outfitters, Inc. in 1970. … Today, the company operates over 200 stores under three brands: Urban Outfitters, Free People, and Anthropologie.

Ironically, the liberal tone of Free People and Urban Outfitters is a reflection of his more liberal early roots. However, Richard Hayne is one of the most conservative billionaires in America. Donating millions of dollars a year to anti-gay rights [legislators]. He was also a staunch supporter of California’s Proposition 8, which passed in November of 2008 taking away the marriage rights of same-sex couples.

These shops — and Mr. Hayne — do not deserve your support! If you are an equality seeker, surely you don’t want them using your money to fund your own legal diminishment and stigmatization.

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3 responses to “Prop 8: Three More Boycott Targets

  1. I see this assertion popping up all over the web lately, and it all refers to a Wikipedia stub on Richard Hayne that does not cite any sources for the allegation that he supported Prop 8. In fact, the latest edit removed it because there were no sources. Apparently he’s not on the donor list you can find online.

    There may well be reasons to boycott Hayne’s stores (supposedly he’s pals with Santorum, whose conservative views are well known), but it irks me to see rumors spread as facts without anyone even checking up on them.

  2. Of course I researched it. The information linking Hayne and Prop 8 did exist and unfortunately can no longer be found. (Yes, we’re frustrated and furious.) I have spoken with numerous credible sources who attest to its existence and disappearance. I trusted and trust them. Right-wingers familiar with my work — generally the subjects of investigative reports I have done — will tell you, even though they often were not shown in the most positive of lights, that they were treated and presented honestly and fairly. I have no interest in telling lies about Hayne or anyone else.

    In any event, as you note, the mogul’s long-documented support of anti-gay politicians alone renders him and his stores verboten in my book. I trust readers will boycott responsibly and ethically should they decide to take that step.

  3. disgustedinchicago

    I am a VERY senior level advertising executive. I manage multi-million $$ advertising campaigns for household name clients – oversee TV shoots, print shoots, hire models, photographers, stylists, provide creative direction on ALL creative. I also have a HUGE love of fashion. I am perpetually asked where did I get this that I’m wearing, I love your clothes, had local mag fashion pubs stop me on to snap photos for “Fashion on the Street” type stuff AND actually turned down a job managing the Vera Wang advertising campaign as I the thought of $3k a month for a studio in NY made my stomach turned me.

    I am relocating back to Florida, have intentions to open my own boutique but thought it would be fun to work as a stylist or visual merchandiser – even as freelance while I write my marketing plan, etc. I sent my resume to TODD SWANSON – the District Manager for the entire state of Florida for Anthropologie / Urban Outfitters.

    This is his EXACT response:

    Begin forwarded message:
    From: Todd Swanson
    Date: January 5, 2009 9:12:07 AM CST
    To: >
    Subject: RE: Jacksonville Stylist Position

    I checked. Not qualified at all.

    I think that pretty much sums on this store. I’ve been their demo for years. Spent THOUSANDS on a new fall wardrobe last year when I relocated back to Chicago from Florida. I will NEVER shop there again!

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