Just in time for St. Patrick's Day, Urban Outfitters has offended the Irish with a new line of products depicting Irish people as — wait for it — reckless drunks. Items include a trucker hat featuring a stick figure performing "Irish Yoga," which entails puking out shamrocks. This from the company that graced us with tasteful Navajo print flasks? Surely something must be amiss.
"By selling and promoting these items, Urban Outfitters is only fueling stereotypes that many Irish Americans, as well as the people of Ireland, work so hard to dispel," said New York Democratic Rep. Joseph Crowley in a statement. Meanwhile, the Ancient Order of Hibernians (!) may stage a boycott of the retailer, and a representative of the organization sent them an open letter that included the following:
"There are those few who use this day as an excuse to over celebrate but that does not give you or anyone else the right to defame and debase a whole race of people by selling the garbage you display in your stores. If this is the way you must make your money by debasing a whole race of people I can assure you that with over forty million people in this country claiming Irish ancestry they will not be your customers after this display of arrogance and disrespect to a whole nation."
Fighting words! But while Urban Outfitters is consistently terrible in every single way, they're not exactly alone when it comes to capitalizing on "Irish people love to get wasted!" stereotypes this time of year. Especially not when it comes to the selling of booze-related novelty t-shirts. Is this reaction warranted, or just kind of over the top? Excuse me while I spike a Shamrock Shake and ponder these heady questions.