Attention Shoppers: T-Shirts May Be Considered Vulgar

A t-shirt with the F-word is on prominent display in a shop window in Santa Monica, where everyone passing by can see. Is it free speech or cause for concern?

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Shoppers in Santa Monica beware. Some t-shirts displayed in the windows of a family friendly shopping area contain some words that are decidedly NOT friendly. Raising the question of what should or should not be out there in plain sight. Have they gone too far, or have the standards of what is acceptable changed? (Published Tuesday, Jun 21, 2011)

    On the 3rd Street Promenade and Broadway in Santa Monica rages the battle of the "Not Necessarily Appropriate T-Shirts."

    In the second floor window of a shop called Kitson is a derogatory, and by traditional standards, vulgar t-shirt targeting New York.

    And on the street level window of the Nike store is another derogatory, and by most traditional standards, vulgar t-shirt targeting gravity.

    Both shirts are in full view, where anyone passing by, including children, can clearly read them.

    For Kitson, it's one of many shirt and gifts which, they admit, push some boundaries, but store managers say the questionably inappropriate clothing is usually the first to sell out.

    "It's trendy. What can you do? It's all about the trend" says Emily Bright, Kitson manager. "It's just that the generation keeps moving forwards. It's all about generation gaps, I guess."

    But Kitson managers say they probably wouldn't put the F-word t-shirt on their first floor windows, but that's probably, not definitely.

    So in the future? Who knows.