The founder CEO of Feminist Apparel — easily the wokest clothing company on the internet — is in hot water after his staff discovered that he had a history of serial sexual abuse of women.
And when Alan Martofel found out that his staff had uncovered his checkered, decidedly non-feminist past, according to Refinery29, he — allegedly — fired every last feminist on his staff for not being woke enough.
Feminist Apparel is well known for its woke shirts, which feature cute slogans like “Cats Against Catcalls,” “Deport Racism,” and “Pizza Rolls Not Gender Roles.” Hardened women’s rights activists sport the shirts at all the top feminist events, like the Women’s March, other Women’s Marches, open mic nights, and when visiting alternative bookstores.
But the brand apparently hid a dark secret. After being tipped off about his potential involvement in a rape, Martofel’s employees searched through his social media profile and found a Facebook status announcing the launch of Feminist Apparel . . . but paragraphs after Martofel admitted to allegedly abusing several women. Feminist Apparel, it seems, was his “humble attempt” at doing penance for his past brushes with “toxic masculinity” and sexual assault.
“We’ve all either faced this firsthand, seen it, heard a firsthand account of it, or are guilty of it ourselves,” Martofel wrote in the the post, according to Refinery29. “I’m someone who’s guilty of it. I’ve grinded up on women on buses and at concerts without their consent. I’ve made out with ‘the drunk chick’ at a party because it was easier. I’ve put a woman’s hand on my d**k while she was sleeping.”
The posts also list sexual assault statistics and information about how to contact non-profits who specialize in helping victims of sexual assault.
Feminist Apparel’s feminist employees were, of course, aghast.
“This is the patriarchy and toxic masculinity at its f*****g finest,” the company’s art director told the women’s magazine. “I feel righteous and angry. I feel supported by my coworkers and friends. I also feel tired. I feel incredibly sorry knowing that there are survivors in this office who were led to believe that their contributions to this company were directly going to creating a safe space and platform for survivors, feminists, and marginalized identities. As an artist myself creating work based on my own experiences with the patriarchy, toxic masculinity, and harassment for this company — and by extension this man — I feel used and willfully mislead.”
The staff approached Martofel and asked him to step down.
“[We] decided the only thing to do was to demand Alan step down as CEO of the company, separate himself, and issue a public apology to our customers, creative partners, and the larger community of intersectional feminists and social justice advocates that he exploited along the way,” a former employee told Refinery29.
Initially, it seems, Martofel agreed. But the next day, staffers found that the company’s credit cards had been shut off, and their email accounts no longer worked. The following Saturday, Martofel sent his employees an email informing them that they were being terminated. His excuse? They simply weren’t woke enough.
“While I continue to regret my past behaviors, my ongoing reflection and conversations regarding them have helped to shape me into who I am and have given me the tools to build an organization that has always strived to be a safe and welcoming space for all,” Martofel wrote in a post on the company’s blog.
“Sadly, in the meeting that took place with my now-former employees last Friday, I was made aware that they, unequivocally, do not share my views on either business or feminism,” he continued. “It is then that the operations of the company were halted for a week, while all employees continued to be paid and I assessed all available options for how to move forward at this juncture. After much deliberation, and in accordance with both state law and our employee handbook, I made the difficult decision to proceed without them.”
His feminist former employees disagreed, telling Refinery29 that it’s Martofel who doesn’t understand feminism and that a true feminist wouldn’t profit off the movement or from sexual assault. The group launched a Tumblr to express their feelings on the matter.
Feminist Apparel continues to sell branded merchandise, though it appears they’ve been affected by the loss of their art director. The front page shows models still stuck on the immigration issue, which was easily two weeks ago. Now it’s all Supreme Court all the time.