Website Criticized For 'Beautifully Bulimic' T-Shirts Trivializing Eating Disorders

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While “beautiful” and “alluring” aren’t generally words used to describe eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia, which are life-threatening disorders that effect millions of Americans, the custom merchandise seller Spreadshirt.com has begun selling t-shirts with the controversial slogans on them.

Some of the t-shirt slogans include “Gracefully Gaunt” and “Breathtakingly Bony”, among other offensive and potentially triggering phrases. Since the shirts’ debut, the company’s CEO Philip Rooke has become the subject of a Change.org petition. Matan Uziel, a resident of Israel and writer of the petition, said he was outraged by the product.

“Apparel websites unfortunately have been promoting and glorifying fashion’s deadly diseases by providing platforms for ignorant individuals,” Uziel wrote.

Uziel, while noting that the company also sells “Nazi chic” merchandise, said that he hopes Rooke will remove the t-shirts from the website.

“We are deeply disappointed to see such offensive listings by Spreadshit, because these are outright wrong,” Uziel continued. “By keeping the t-shirts, Spreadshirt is playing a great role in trivializing the physiological and [psychological] complications of anorexia, bulimia and other eating disorders.”

In a press release, Rooke defended the website’s controversial product. He argued that the site is proud of artists and designers who express their ideas on merchandizing, noting that the intent of the artist is to highlight the issue of societal pressure for women to have perfect bodies. Rooke insisted that the views of the artist don’t reflect the views of Spreadshirt, but that the company’s views shouldn’t govern what sellers can produce.

Noting Uziel’s petition, Rooke said that the company often experiences indivudals who “appoint themselves as judge and jury” of what should be acceptable in society. He noted that it’s simple for anyone to attack a platform without understanding what the content is really about.

Rooke reported that Spreadshirt will continue to support the right for all artists, designers, merchandizers and businesses to voice their ideas.

Source: The Huffington Post

 
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