March 4, 2014
Gary H. Schoenfeld
President and Chief Executive Officer
Senior Vice President, Women’s Merchandising
Pacific Sunwear of California, Inc.
3450 E. Miraloma Avenue
Anaheim, California 92806
RE: Boycott Pacsun for its disgusting portrayal of Jesus as an “Original Gangster”
Dear Mr. Schoenfeld and Ms. Lee:
Recently, I had the unfortunate experience of shopping in one of your local retail stores. I replaced the armful of clothing I was going to buy for my daughter when I happened upon Pacsun’s anti-Christian bigotry in the form of a t-shirt calling Jesus an “Original Gangster”. On March 2, 2014, I contacted your Customer Service via email about the t-shirt you seem to think appropriate to sell both online and in your retail stores (attached, from your website). I’ve had no response.
This t-shirt is an ugly parody of an iconic picture of Jesus, except its creator has put Him in sunglasses and has Him using gangster hand gestures. The caption under this picture is “Original Gangster”. A “gangster” is a “thug, villain, and hoodlum” among other things. Many for whom Jesus is not a gangster but, rather, a great prophet and even the Son of God find this depiction not simply tasteless and offensive, but grossly insulting. Even more shocking is your company’s utterly repulsive insensitivity to a very large majority of people shopping in your stores: Christians.
Can you imagine yourselves marketing the same t-shirt with, for example, a picture of Mohammed, an Orthodox Jewish rabbi, or the first black President? I think not. Yet Christians are fair game? I have a gangster imperative for you on the tip of my tongue…..
I have and will continue to circulate this letter to urge my friends, relatives and associates to boycott your store. If you think it wise to degrade Jesus and insult His followers, then you will reap the consequences for the only thing that matters to folks like you: the bottom line.
Very truly yours,
Lake Forest, IL 60045
cc. Pacsun Board of Directors