Monday, April 22, 2002

Me Wantee Shirteee

The Abercrombie and Fitch racial stereotype scandal has gotten more interesting. You may remember that a few days back Asian-Americans began registering their displeasure with new t-shirt designs that included drawings of slant-eyed, coolie hat-wearing caricatures and broken English word play not seen since anti-Japanese World War II propaganda posters. The company professed shock that anyone would find them offensive, but promised to stop making the inexplicably unacceptable designs.

As with any hastily discontinued consumer product, however, the shirts have quickly become high-priced collectors items - CNN notes that they were going for $249 on eBay as of Saturday. Things have changed in the past couple days, though, as very unlikely bids have topped $10,000 a shirt. It seems Asian-American activists are risking the very real threat of negative feedback to keep the shirts out of the hands of racially insensitive collectors. I would have preferred a boycott to online fraud, but it nice to see the legendarily humorless proprietors of race politics exhibiting some creativity.

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