Dear frat bros. and sorority sisters,
I’m writing you this, to bring awareness to a certain issue that’s come about within the past few years. I see you all posting things on social media sites about your socials and wearing t-shirts that you get from these socials, bringing coolers, duffel bags, backpacks, etc. I think it’s great that you all are mingling around with other like minded folks in college, but one thing has started to irk me a bit.
The improper use of the Patagonia Clothing Co. logo.
I completely understand that their logo is awesome. I mean, who wouldn’t want to wear a logo that had the west facing skyline of Cerro Fitzroy, in Patagonia? It’s a beautiful sight in pictures that almost any outdoor adventurer would want to be in the presence of, one day. Climbers would absolutely love to climb the The California Route on Cerro Fitzroy that was established by Yvon Chouinard in 1968, when he made the third overall ascent with three of his buddies.
You knew that skyline was a picture of Cerro Fitzroy, didn’t you?
Enough about the actual look of the logo, how about what the logo actually represents? When I see Cerro Fitzroy on a shirt, hoodie, hat, etc. I immediately think Patagonia. When I think Patagonia, I think of the quality of their clothing and their commitment to preserving the environment. Sure their stuff is expensive, but I know that the company produces the best product with the least amount of harm done to the environment.
After finding out that cotton causes the most harm to the environment, in the early 1990’s, Yvon Chouinard made the commitment that Patagonia would only use pesticide free cotton. Sure it’d cost a little more, but the impact on the environment is significantly less than standard cotton. This of course, would lead to what we all now know as the organic cotton industry in California.
Furthermore, Patagonia’s Certified B-corporation and are obliged to public-benefit concerns (environmental) next to its profit motive. Makes sense that they started donating 1% of their sales or 10% of their profit (whichever is more) to environmental groups. Since the company policy was adopted in 1985, they’ve donated over $46 million to grassroots environmental groups that are making a difference in local communities.
Being that you use the Patagonia logo all the time, I’m sure you already knew that. It’s kind of hard to believe you knew that since I see a lot of trash in the form of cigarette butts, cans, and bottles coming from your brothers and sisters on the beaches where I surf and in the woods where I hike and climb.
Please don’t take this as a letter of hate or condemnation towards fraternities/sororities, it’s far from that. I see the value in fraternities/sororities and I think it’s great that you’re part of one. They can be a great tool to make new connections and lots of my close friends are part of/have been part of a fraternity/sorority.
By all means, keep your letters, rock those Chubbies, J. Crew shorts, tank tops, and plastic sunglasses. That’s your “thing” and I think it’s great. I’m not asking you to not wear or stop wearing Patagonia clothing. In order to keep folks from associating the Patagonia logo with your fraternity/sorority, I’m just asking one favor of you.
Please leave the Patagonia logo alone
Justin Fricke (The Weekend Warrior)