Update, 3/28: Jeff Kirwan, President and CEO of Gap, responded to Alice's kickass letter, Beth Jacob wrote in a new post for The Washington Post.
His letter reads as follows:
I got hold of the letters you sent in and wanted to be the one to reply to you. I'm Jeff and I'm the head of Gap.
You sound like a really cool kid with a great sense of style.
At GapKids, we try to always offer a wide range of styles and choices for girls and boys. This includes a selection of girls' tees with dinosaurs, firetrucks, sharks, footballs and some of our superheroes. Our latest Disney Collection, Beauty and the Beast, is also all about the strength and bravery of girls, and that's something that's really important to us.
But, you are right, I think we can do a better job offering even more choices that appeal to everyone. I've talked with our designers and we're going to work on even more fun stuff that I think you'll like.
In the meantime, I'm going to send you a few of my favorite tees from our latest collection. Please check them out and let us know what you think. Our customers' comments are very important to us, and they help us create even better products with each season.
Thank you again,
Gap Brand President & CEO"
Little Alice's response to the letter. "Whoah."
So, according to Jacob's post, she and her daughter wrote back to Kirwan. Their letter reads as follows:
"Dear Mr. Kirwan,
This is Beth, Alice's mom. We were really glad to see your message, so we're responding to say thanks, plus a couple other things.
This is from Alice:
'Thank you for those clothes and the letter. It made me feel good. The Rey shirt is pretty cool. I'm going to wear it to school tomorrow.
P.S. Could you make some shirts with the Beast? I like him because he's big and furry and looks like Chewbacca."
Original, 3/17: Who isn't fed up with girls being marketed and sold clothes to in one particular way? Girls like other clothes besides pink frilly items...because they are humans with varied interests. Imagine that.
Consider 5-year-old Alice Jacob, daughter of Beth Jacob, who wrote a story about the trouble with Gap (and similar stores) in The Washington Post earlier this month. Alice, according to Beth's story, likes things like dinosaurs, sports, and superheroes. Though she identifies as a girl, she prefers to wear boy's clothing. There's nothing wrong or weird about that. If only retailers knew that when they were creating apparel for kids, though!
Jacob points out that while there are more independent clothing stores that sell less gendered apparel for kids, they tend to be a bit pricey; and, yes, she is also aware that some other big companies are making the shift to sell more neutral apparel. (Target sells gender neutral apparel, for example.) But that's not enough for her daughter, who wanted to see clothes that felt like they were made for her at Gap, with things she likes, like Star Wars, for example. Why are those things reserved for boys, after all?
So what's a frustrated 5-year-old to do? Write a damn letter to the Gap, that's what.
Here's Alice's letter, via Huffington Post:
My name is Alice Jacob and I am almost 5 1/2 years old. I like cool shirts like Superman and Batman shirts and race car shirts, too. All your girl shirts are pink and princesses and stuff like that. The boys' shirts are really cool. They have Superman, Batman, rock-and-roll and sports. What about girls who like those things like me, and my friend Olivia?
Can you make some cool girls' shirts please? Or, can you make a 'no boys or girls' section - only a kids' section?
Thank you, Alice Jacob"
Speaks for itself, doesn't it?
This isn't the first time Gap has been accused of being overtly gendered. Remember last summer, when the people of the internet were irked when some Gap apparel feature the labels "the little scholar" on boys' t-shirts and "the social butterfly" on girls' t-shirts? This should jog your memory:
Of course, not everything Gap sells for girls is pink, but who cares what I think about it? I'm a grown woman who doesn't shop there, and what really matters is what the girls Gap wants to dress - like Alice and her friend Olivia - think.
(h/t Huffington Post)
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