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(Lexington Herald)   Anti-Defamation League is cracking down on offensive t-shirts. Fark ad sponsors surrender   ( divider line
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11361 clicks; posted to Main » on 22 May 2004 at 1:57 AM (13 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2004-05-21 08:20:39 PM  

An Open Letter to our Loyal Fans

First, and foremost I want to make it absolutely clear that we are in no way affiliated with Howard Stern or the Howard Stern show.

When we listened on April Fool's Day, and Howard pretended they were taken off the air, we got the joke. But we didn't find it very funny, and I don't think we were supposed to be amused. A world without Stern is like a day without sunshine, like a stripper without a lap to dance on. Somehow it all seems kind of pointless.

We knew we had to take action. People say that the Stern show is dead, but I say that the reports of its death are premature. In this Easter season I predict that like Jesus Christ, the Howard Stern Show will have a glorious resurrection if every one of us will just do their part.

We are just a t-shirt company. So we have made a t-shirt which we are going to distribute, at only $5, to anyone who believes that freedom of speech is an inalienable right we have as Americans. To allow this right to be eroded by religious fundamentalists and right wing fanatics is tantamount to bending over for Osama Bin Laden and all of his buddies and saying, "Go ahead and give it to me like the sad, little biatch that I am."

Howard Stern is the beginning, not the end of a ruthless, political agenda determined to strip you of your civil liberties and control everything that you buy, see, and hear. We could be next. You could be next. This is not just about Howard Stern. This is not just important if you own a strip club.

If you support gay rights, if you support a woman's right to choose, if you do anything outside the so-called "mainstream", believe me they are coming for you next. So organize an event, write a petition, put on a t-shirt before it's too late. I don't want the last words I hear before I turn off my radio for good to be, "Seacrest, Out!"


(I don't work for them)
2004-05-21 11:15:30 PM  
I wonder if the ADL will go after this guy (pops).

(I don't work for him either.)
2004-05-22 02:03:22 AM  
I see that removed the t-shirt sponsor on the right that suggested we would be happy if there was no liberals. Or was that an eradication request? Anyway, that was a pretty stupid ad. Or typical.
2004-05-22 02:06:12 AM  
In February, Urban Outfitters' red-white-and-blue "Voting Is for Old People" T-shirt ticked off voter groups. Urban Outfitters said the retro tee was meant to be ironic, though critics said it could discourage young people from voting.

Yeah, because you'd be really upset if Bush lost by one vote to Bizarro Bush. Voter apathy isn't caused by T-shirts, its caused by a retarded system and political climate. God Bless America!
2004-05-22 02:07:25 AM  
Free Speech surrenders. Oh, and Viva Regan, Fry Mumia and My Conservative Kid Beat Up Your War Protesting Brat.
2004-05-22 02:07:46 AM  
Meh, those T-shirts are never funny anyway.
2004-05-22 02:08:46 AM  
In February, Urban Outfitters' red-white-and-blue "Voting Is for Old People" T-shirt ticked off voter groups. Urban Outfitters said the retro tee was meant to be ironic, though critics said it could discourage young people from voting.

Yeah, because young'uns won't get discouraged from voting by asshats pulling dodgy shiat with digital voting systems, or by the antics of politicians doing whatever their corporate masters tell them to, or anything like that....

I believe it was John Cleese who said "No-one has the right not to be offended."
2004-05-22 02:09:26 AM  
They'd better not take away the right to buy my beloved J-List T-Shirts. I'm a dirty, rotten gaijin and proud of it.
2004-05-22 02:10:42 AM  
I like the Reagan-as-che one, sans the writing. It is funny and satirical on so many different levels...from right or left.
2004-05-22 02:11:45 AM  
I suspect the ADL and others will just have to get over it.

I'm sure that Urban Outfitters appreciates the free publicity, however. I wouldn't have known about this unless it made the news.

I can't believe they actually removed Ghettopoly from the shelves; that was hilarious. Shame on UO for being cowed by retarded loudmouths.
2004-05-22 02:12:38 AM  
My t-shirt doesn't say anything. I feel inferior.
You make my "self-esteem" go down FruitOfTheLoom, damn you. I'll see you in court.
2004-05-22 02:16:29 AM  
Again, the US Constitution does not contain 'the right to not be offended'.

We are a diverse country. The original melting pot. So why does anyone get surprised when you bring such diverse people together, people with incredibly different views, and someone gets offended?
2004-05-22 02:19:54 AM  
not my president
[image from too old to be available]
2004-05-22 02:26:53 AM  
But what's edgy to some people is over the edge to others. Since last fall, the company has angered Jews, Catholics, African-Americans and young voters with its cheeky T-shirts and toys.

2004-05-22 02:27:28 AM  
I find it humorous that catholics complained about the dress-up jesus magnets, jesus bobbleheads, and jesus nightlights... they are probably just upset that they didnt think of it first.

i just went to the 'cathedral of our lady of the angeles' in los angeles for a school project, and in the gift shop they had pens with crosses on the end that light up pink when you write... along with other equally tacky items.
2004-05-22 02:31:45 AM  
The kitsch does totally rock. I am down with its fresh smack.
2004-05-22 02:34:28 AM  
I was discussing with a co-worker today about a t-shirt I wanted to have made. It would only have three words on it:


If cutty can't hang, then I'll jack him up - tightly.
2004-05-22 02:38:04 AM  
Abe "fatman" foxman and his adl can kiss my white gentile arse. Oh, and get the hell outta my country too.
2004-05-22 02:44:24 AM  
Worst shirt i ever saw said

"I like my women like I like my coffee..."

The back read

"Ground up and in the freezer"

Someone was actually wearing that TO WORK!! Know where i can buy one ;)
2004-05-22 02:45:28 AM  
hmm, seems to me that the headline submitter was unfair to the ADL, given that they were one of at least 5 groups mentioned, have not exactly been "cracking down" (filed a complaint), and are not the focus of the article. the article is about tshirts that offend various groups (and the companies that sell them). seems a little off focus, that's all i'm saying.
2004-05-22 02:52:43 AM  

Guy at the bar the other night:

"Dead girls never say no"

& that was one of his "mild" shirts.
2004-05-22 02:57:39 AM  
fark the ADL. In big, bold letters.
They're worse than PETA.
2004-05-22 03:02:54 AM  
A thought occurred to me today: people get off on feeling righteous and superior. Think about it and you'll agree. I do too. You do as well. Any time a person can feel they have a better/more developed/more correct opinion than their fellow man than they have a feeling of righteousness, which feels pretty good.

Remember this when you are tempted to dis someone who is making a big deal about non-PC stuff. They are just getting in their digs of righteous feelings.

Of course, that means you get to make fun of them -- and by doing so, you get to have your own fuzzy feelings of righteousness.

Fun, idn't it?
2004-05-22 03:12:27 AM  
and when it does push the wrong buttons, the store steps back, unlike Abercrombie which "continually pushes and pushes and pushes the envelope."

Yes, because we all know how edgy a clothing company is when they charge $25 a t-shirt.
2004-05-22 03:25:36 AM  

2004-05-22 02:38:04 AM elPoot

Abe "fatman" foxman and his adl can kiss my white gentile arse. Oh, and get the hell outta my country too.
Interestingly, the ADL isn't mentioned until near the end of the article, but the Catholic League's complaint is the topic of the 4th sentence. Do Catholics need to "get the hell outta your country", too?
2004-05-22 03:31:25 AM  
T-Bone42: and now you get to feel all superior for pointing it out! The system works!
2004-05-22 03:43:37 AM  
grahams: sells that one. I've always wondered if people actually wear those types of shirts out in public.
2004-05-22 03:44:46 AM  
I really hate the people that think they're doing the world a favor by pulling this shiat. My parents moved to the US to avoid stuff like this, but now, what do we have here?

I remember seeing the bill of non-rights somewhere. Can't remember exactly what it said, but the most important point-- You do not have the right to never be offended. God, I hate living in this sterile environment wher if I say one thing out of line, it'll be the end of me. What ever happened to free speech?
2004-05-22 03:45:03 AM  
Though the delicious irony of it all is that Urban Outfitters customers are exactly the sort who feel terribly nonconformist and different by wearing mainstream clothing. Of course, this is only a secondhand opinion, so it could be less than accurate. (Though, in my defense, I'm presently wearing a ludicrously-priced t-shirt from Stonehenge.)
2004-05-22 03:45:46 AM  
Hey i live in the UK and i dont know what the ADL is anyone enlighten me,
i dont think anyone has the right to tell what you can and cant wear, unless its openly racist or realy offensive
the reason i think some of those Tshirts should be banned is that they are crap and not funny,

"i like my women like my coffee, ground up and in the freezer" is just not funny, its not offensive its just moronic

on the other hand the "voting is for old people" is great id wear one of those (being 18), although ive never voted i think i will vote to keep tony blair because hes realy pretty good even if he does roll over and take it up the A** from Bush on just about every issue
2004-05-22 03:50:04 AM  
The ADL is a pathologically evil group who use their clout and holocaust-guilt to mow over any and all those who oppose them.
2004-05-22 03:50:41 AM  
When I was little, my mom got me a tee-shirt from a local college that was called "Beaver College" (I kid you not)that had "I'm a little Beaver" on the front.

I got sent home from school for it.
Until that day, how many 11 year olds knew that beaver meant pussy?
2004-05-22 03:52:55 AM  
Yours seems like such a cool country. I guess I'll be wearing my "armed & dangerous" t-shirt next time I arrive on an American airport. Customs people must have the greatest sense of humor.
2004-05-22 04:06:22 AM  
People who whine about shiat like this suck at life.
2004-05-22 04:14:31 AM  
Many stores dropped the line after people said the slogans -- including "Boys Are Stupid, Throw Rocks at Them" -- amounted to boy-bashing.

Where did all these weak, sniveling, oversensitive, whining crybaby ultra-pussified faggotty types comes from all of the sudden? And how did they manage to get through high-school?

Why the hell don't these people just commit suicide and do the world a favor? Really. If you're offended by a T-Shirt, you need to farking kill yourself. Go lock yourself in the garage, turn on the car, and suck those fumes deep into your lungs. Just make sure you turn the radio off- wouldn't want you to accidentally hear something that might offend you...
2004-05-22 04:16:02 AM  
I think those farkers at the Catholic League should concentrate more of their energy preventing priests from buggering little boys. Apparently they find t-shirts more offensive than having a church heirarchy that knowingly protects and enables pedophiles.
2004-05-22 04:26:00 AM  
No longer shall I wear my "All your Base are belong to us" shirt because it might offend the Japanese for their poor translation.

I'm also going to stop wearing white shirts, they may indicate that I'm partial to Caucasians, or black shirts, they may indicate that I'm partial to Africans, or any other color for that matter. We should all just go naked.

Et les enfants, la morale de cette histoire:

No matter what you do you will always offend someone somewhere...

Is a Jesus Action Figure really that offensive? Is it offensive at all? I have one!
2004-05-22 04:29:24 AM  
Yours seems like such a cool country. I guess I'll be wearing my "armed & dangerous" t-shirt next time I arrive on an American airport. Customs people must have the greatest sense of humor.

Yeah i visited New York last year and let me tell you the guys at immegration are Farking rude
You have to fill out loads of forms to get in right,
anyway i filled mine out wrong, the immegration guy said are you stupid cant you read whats wrong with you, i leaned over to point something out on the form, at which point he shouted at me "get the hell off the desk" I withdrew, he then said you want to go home, ill put you on the next plane do want to go home, do you!,
to which i was forced to respond no i dont want to go home. (as if i would have taken a 7hr flight just for the fun of it), trust me when people talk to like that you almost do feel like going home and taking my hard earned tourist cash with me. After belittling me for about 10 minutes he got bored and let me through (i was only 17 at the time) I went to lodge a complaint at the airport, strangely enough the airport wasnt very helpfull, in fact they basically said i couldnt.
I was picked up by a friend who's a policeman he told me that the immegration people are pretty much untouchable, all the airport people cover each others backs, and eventually it will come down to your word against his.
The guy was on a complete power trip, glaring over his raised booth dishing out insutls and nasty comments. As i left i was amused to hear him say "have a nice day", thanks
2004-05-22 05:00:55 AM  
"Shiiiiiit, the bro was on, but the folks was freaking. Tightened that bad sucka' upside the runway like a muthaaa'."
2004-05-22 05:48:33 AM  
Bring down the Hammer!

[image from too old to be available]
Mordechai Jefferson Carver
The Hebrew Hammer
2004-05-22 05:57:00 AM  
most offensive shirt evar.... I'd probably beat someone up if I saw someone wearing this one. (I am as non-violent as they come too)

I (plane) NY
2004-05-22 06:06:57 AM  
I designed a t-shirt with the object of getting beat up for wearing it. Abu Ghraib party games:
2004-05-22 06:10:00 AM  
I'm a Christian with a Master's degree in theology and I laughed at the dress-up crucified Christ with the TGIF sign..

/going to hell
2004-05-22 06:12:27 AM  
I dont see a shirt on that targets jews... am I missing something?
2004-05-22 06:14:44 AM  
ok... i am a moron. next time i will read the article first. hehe nothing to do with
2004-05-22 06:31:50 AM  

i'm pretty sure that would offend some jews
2004-05-22 07:04:10 AM  
I think people should be allowed to say what they want, and by extension, be allowed to make, sell, buy and/or wear whatever they like, even stupid t-shirts with rude/obnoxious/asinine "jokes" on them.

Some of them I think are funny, albeit rude. Some of them I think are offensive, albeit funny. Some of them are stupid, but funny. And some of them are just stupid.

But regardless of how I feel about them, they're just clothes, and just words. If you're brave enough to make shirts of that kind, or sell them, or buy them, or wear them in public... more power to you.

Even if they are insensitive, callous, in poor taste, offensive, etc., I still think it less offensive than censorship.

That being said, I think it quite fair for such shirts to be banned in places of business or other private/semi-private places at the discretion of those who own the business/property.

I certainly don't condone being being immaturely insensitive or callous, and I'm certain I wouldn't be caught dead wearing most of those t-shirts (in part because I'm a nice boy and I don't go out of my way to offend people for no reason; that and I'm a pussy and don't want to get beaten up over a t-shirt) but I will still defend people's right to wear such offensive t-shirts, or make them, or sell them, or buy them.

Sure, words can hurt. And in certain places, under certain conditions, I think in the interests of public safety, there can be certain limits placed on free speech. You may not be allowed to wear such shirts to work, but in public on your own free time?

I don't see why not. Just as I think neo-Nazi skinheads should have the right to wear their precious "Aryan" Celtic crosses or Tottenkopf skulls and Nazi swastikas - sure, it's offensive, but 1) maybe they'll finally stop whining about their precious freedoms if they were allowed to wear their damned symbols, 2) even if I disagree with it, I still believe they have the right to wear it, just as a pro-Israeli Jew has the right to wear the Star of David flag, or a Christian a Jesus on the Cross, or an American wearing the Stars and Stripes, a Communist wearing the Red Hammer and Sickle, or a Muslim wearing the Crescent of Islam (or whatever it's called), or goths and Satanists wearing pentacles and upside-down crosses.

I would rather see jokes about Abu Ghraib on a t-shirt, than actually see the tortures of Abu Ghraib actually occurring. The former is merely a tasteless joke, but the latter is quite clearly amoral and unethical, not merely offensive.
2004-05-22 07:13:46 AM  
If you need to express how cool you are with a clever T-shirt from a mall chain, you deserve everything you get. Think "Comic Book Guy" or high school punks.
2004-05-22 07:24:08 AM  
I have the hitler shirt. He wasnt such a bad guy, he was just misunderstood.

The shirt from t-shirt hell that gets me the most looks is the one with jesus one the back. "There are two people farking on the back of this shirt" "Just kidding believe in Jesus"

Me being a big bulky guy, I may get my share of 'wtf' looks whilst wearing the hitler of jesus tee, but no-one has threatened me with bodily harm.

Grannie said if I bought the I plane NY tee she'd burn it.
2004-05-22 08:11:05 AM  
So my 'Babies, the other white meat' T-shirt will have to stay in the closet?
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