Woman Spends $567 To Buy All The ‘Indecent’ T-Shirts In Mall Store

One of the PacSun shirts the shopper purchased because she felt they were indecent.

One of the PacSun shirts the shopper purchased because she felt they were indecent.

If you see a product in a store that you think is indecent or should otherwise not be on sale to the public, what’s your reaction? Maybe you complain to the store manager, or take your issue to the local media. If you feel it’s so bad that it violates the law, you might contact the proper authorities. But do you spend quite a bit of cash to rid the store of the items in question?

That’s what a woman in Orem, Utah, did when she recently spend $567 at a local PacSun clothing store to snap up all the retailer’s tees featuring half-dressed women on them.

It appears that the particular line that the shopper has a problem with is the V/SUAL Heartbreakers from Van Style, which use photographs of women in lingerie on the shirts.

[CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified the brand of shirt as V/SUAL Heartbreakers from Vans Style. The correct name is Van Style, a label that is in no way connected to the Vans apparel brand.]

The woman tells the Provo Daily Herald that she came across a window display for the new line and was not pleased with what she saw.

“I had a conversation with the store manager,” she explains. “She said she did refuse to put the accompanying banner up with the display because it was much worse, but that she couldn’t take down the T-shirts without talking to her corporate office, but the promo was over Wednesday anyway. She said she told them it might not go over well.”

Management at the mall, which does have a rule against vulgar displays, says that other customers had complained about the PacSun shirts.

“This is hard to police because of freedom of speech,” said the mall manager, who says it is up to the Orem city attorney to determine whether the display violates local obscenity ordinances.

“That sounds all well and good,” says the concerned shopper. “But why would they have to go to the city attorney when it’s obviously against the mall lease.”

And so she purchased $567 worth of the shirts, which she plans to return to the store for a refund one day before the return window closes.

“I hope my efforts will inspire others to speak up within their communities,” she tells the AP. “You don’t have to purchase $600 worth of T-shirts, but you can express your concerns to businesses and corporations who promote the display of pornography to children.”

Of course, this sort of effort also has a tendency to backfire. It’s unlikely that most people would have heard or cared about a limited run T-shirt collection at a 600-chain retailer without this story going public. PacSun may have to refund her the $576 when she returns the shirt, but she’s unintentionally given the store many thousands of dollars worth of free publicity.

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  1. theoriginalcatastrophegirl says:

    and by the time she returns them, their reports will have been sent to corporate, indicating this line of shirts is a best seller, prompting an order of lots more shirts for the display.
    clearly she’s never worked retail

  2. schwartzster says:

    “why would they have to go to the city attorney when it’s obviously against the mall lease.”

    Hit the nail on the head here. The mall can choose whether to allow this display or not, but they shouldn’t try to weasel out of that responsibility by trying to pass it on to government (which actually does have to consider the Constitution).

  3. ShadyTrust says:

    She must be giving quite a bit of business to Victoria’s Secret.

  4. Raekwon says:

    I’m not fully understanding her argument. She repeatedly states that she is afraid children will see the displays. Then she goes to say Victoria’s secret is ok because you buy underwear there. So which is it? She doesn’t want people buying provocative clothes or she’s against revealing displays? This mall is next door to me and the Victoria’s secret, like most, has women lounging in underwear in all their displays in plain view of any children regardless if they want to buy underwear or not.

    Honestly I think the shirts are demeaning and in bad taste but this is not the way to go about things.

    • furiousd says:

      The mall manager said it was different, somehow, the Mom in question didn’t bring up Victoria’s Secret. Personally I think anything viewable to the public should be appropriate for the public, I hate this stuff being broadcast everywhere in the mall so I don’t go there anymore and I haven’t had cable for several years for similar reasons. It’s still on billboards in several places in town and unfortunately the attitude of the general public seems to always garner a response of ‘sheltering your children’ rather than a recognition of the effect that pornography has on a person and groups of people that have accepted it into their society.

  5. DyinMyelin says:

    I hope her cat chews up the receipt.

  6. GoldHillDave says:

    So stores that display women’s underwear are OK, but stores that display pictures of women’s underwear are not. That’s logical.

    • DustinDopps says:

      I don’t know about you, but my mind and body react different to a picture of women’s underwear than to a picture of a woman in lingerie. Just saying.