A boycott campaign against Abercrombie & Fitch that has collected more than 26,000 petition signatures continues despite the clothing company’s decision to pull from stores its “Christmas Field Guide” promoting “group sex and more” on the cover.

But the Ohio-based firm claims the racy quarterly was removed not because of pressure from the family advocacy groups, but to make room on it shelves for its new perfume, NOW. And next month, customers can expect more pictures of naked young people in the spring issue.

Although Christmas is still several weeks away, company spokesman Hampton Carney explained the holiday “magalog,” which sells for $7, was removed because it already had been on shelves six weeks and the new issue will appear in January.

“Every single inch of store space is so valuable now,” said Carney to the Columbus Dispatch, noting the company has a separate catalog distributed without charge.

That explanation did not ring true to Maryam Kubasek, spokeswoman for a boycott campaign, led by the National Coalition for the Protection of Children and Families.

“I think it’s ironic that they chose to make that kind of a merchandise decision in the middle of the biggest shopping period of the year,” she told WorldNetDaily. “I think all retailers are vulnerable to public opinion, and I don’t think A&F is immune to that.”

But Carney emphasized “there has been no real change in policy or editorial direction for the catalog” and assured the Los Angeles Times the spring issue will have plenty of nudity.

Kubasek said that is precisely why its campaign continues.

“They are making it clear they are not backing away from their marketing philosophy,” she said.

Indeed, as the Field Guides were being pulled, the company announced it would feature its “infamous male and female greeters” on the day after Thanksgiving, the start of the Christmas shopping season.

“A dollar donation to Toys for Tots lets anyone snuggle up for a picture between two hunky, shirtless A&F guys,” a news release said. “They’ll make Santa think twice before he reaches for another slice of pumpkin pie.”

The company said, “The Toys for Tots Program provides happiness and hope to disadvantaged children who might otherwise be overlooked during the Christmas holiday.”

Founded in 1892, Abercrombie operates 641 stores in the U.S., including Abercrombie Kids and Hollister Co., which it introduced in 2000.

The quarterly began its racy approach to marketing in 1998. An order by the Michigan attorney general in 1999 – citing a state law barring disseminating, exhibiting and displaying sexual explicit matter to minors – forced Abercrombie to limit its sale to people 18 and over and require ID.

‘Supersafe alternative’

The 2003 Christmas issue, the slipcover says, offers “280 Pages of Moose, Ice Hockey, Chivalry, Group Sex & More … .”

One article says “a pleasant and supersafe alternative to [group sex] is group masturbation – sometimes called a circle jerk or Jack-and-Jill-Off.”

Mark Millar, a comic book writer shares this thought: “My idea is you have the Old Testament, the New Testament, and this is the Final Testament. This is a thing about Jesus coming back as a 12-year-old kid … pontificating whether or not he should masturbate … .”

In another interview, Sari Locker, author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Sex,” says: “College is the time when you have the greatest opportunity to have sex [and] the highest number of potential sexual partners … .”

This year’s issue also includes a “sexpertise” column that says kids going to college “shouldn’t be looking for someone to marry.” Rather they should be “focused on getting experience.”

The “sexpert” employed by Abercrombie offers advice on “sex for three” and tells readers willing to “go down” on a date at the movies it’s OK, “just so long as you do not disturb those around you.”

A comparison column advises men on the benefits of sleeping with young school girls as opposed to older women, comparing the “fruits” of biting into “fresh apple right off the tree” versus the “store-bought variety that sit on the shelf wrinkled and bruised from the handling.”

Editor’s note: America’s increasingly bizarre youth culture – pierced, tattooed, and hyper-sexualized – is the focus of the shocking December issue of WND’s acclaimed monthly Whistleblower magazine, titled “KILLER CULTURE.” If you’ve ever wondered why rap music and gangland clothing, extreme “body modification,” every type of sexual experience, drug abuse and other harmful behaviors have taken such a powerful hold on today’s young people – and at progressively younger and younger ages – December’s Whistleblower has the answers you’ve never read anywhere else.

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