Posted by: Ophelia | July 17, 2008

Hipster humor can be dangerous

The set up: 25 year old woman buys $69 “Obama is my slave” shirt and subsequently gets spit on and has her earphones taken out.m Now she’s suing the shirt maker. I guess it’s one thing to wear an inflammatory shirt but completely another to design it. Clearly her decision to wear a shirt that caused such a reaction was directly influenced by the availability of the shirt.

Not justifying the alleged beat down she got, but chances are good that if she would wear such a shirt, she might be the type to say similarly satiric things that may have left her in much the same situation.

Not that the designer is a catch himself.

This isn’t Braun’s first sartorial criticism of the Democratic presidential presumptive nominee. He has also sold shirts with slogans such as “Jews Against Obama,” “Obama = Hitler” and “Who Killed Obama?” — which he claims was so popular, he moved 1,200 pieces.

“I can’t stand Obama,” Braun says, adding that it’s not because the Illinois senator is black. “That’s the only thing I like about him. He opens the door for other minorities.”

“He reminds me of Adolf Hitler,” Braun explained, adding he does not like Obama because “he is a Muslim” — a thoroughly debunked myth. (New York Metro)

Oh hipsters. Prejudice isn’t satire, nor is the consistent spread of misinformation and hate. Nice try though.

side note: $69? For iron on letters? Really? Does hipster humor cost that much these days?

Image from: The Steel Closet

More at Womanist Musings.

frau sally benz:

UPDATE, for those still checking:

The man, the store, and the t-shirt, sadly, <a href=”; rel=”nofollow”>all seem to exist</a>. The lawsuit, however, seems to be pretty much <a href=”; rel=”nofollow”>a load of BS</a> and an attempt for the designer to get publicity.

Hipster humor may also be dangerous for paper editors:

A tipster tells us that Mark Bulliet, an editor at NYC’s throwaway free morning paper Metro, has been fired.

As we told you last week, that story’s only source was the crappy designer who had sold the t-shirt, and it’s likely the whole thing was a tasteless, racist publicity stunt that Metro fell for. A source tells us that Bulliet had an intern do the story despite its incredibly poor sourcing. (Gawker)



  1. I was thinking of doing a post on this (after I finish my work), but you beat me to it. My take on his quote about hating Obama (not ’cause he’s black, or anything) was this:

    You know, we see right through your “I’m not a racist, but I have an inexplicable deep-seeded emotional reaction against Barack Obama” garbage, right? You go around saying things like that – or like “he’s a secret Muslim” or “he knows a black preacher who said something I disagree with and therefore all black people are scary” or “because he’s an uppity elitist” – and we know you’re a racist. You don’t actually have to make a shirt announcing it.

    On a side note, Jump off the Bridge is working on confirming the story – the $65 for a junk tee struck her as odd too.

  2. I found a couple of links indicating that the store might just be real (until somebody I know literally sees the store, I won’t be 100% convinced).

    Either way, the guy exists, and I think that’s really bad enough– publicity stunt or not.

  3. “I don’t like Obama, but it’s not because he’s black. I’m not racist. It’s because…. uh…. his name!! It means he’s Muslim!!! Or better yet, he’s like Hitler!! Don’t ask me to explain, I’m way too busy being busy!”

  4. I think that his association with Hitler is what drives me around the bend. Seriously what a disgusting statement for a Jewish man it make. It completely diminishes the holocaust.

  5. UPDATE, for those still checking:

    The man, the store, and the t-shirt, sadly, all seem to exist. The lawsuit, however, seems to be pretty much a load of BS and an attempt for the designer to get publicity.

  6. It seems that it may have been a hoax, but this too could just be a rumor.

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