Thanks to my observant friend Jong who was doing some shopping at Mayfair Mall in Victoria (with his camera phone close at hand), we got some photos of some very offensive t-shirts being sold at Spencer Gifts. Obviously the execs at this company weren't paying attention when Abercrombie put out their line of racist shirts. Please take a look and email/send a letter/call Spencer Gifts to express your rage. The contact info is listed below along with my own letter. (If that's too much work, at the very least, sign the online petition http://new.petitiononline.com/APA911/petition.html)
To Spencer Gifts:
You obviously learned nothing from the Abercrombie & Fitch debacle. I am appalled and disgusted by your line of “Asian-themed” t-shirts featuring stereotyped Asian caricatures and offensive text. The shirt that reads “SUK MAI COCK POULTRY FARM” is an obvious mockery of the Chinese language and sophomoric jab at Asians and their supposed difficulty with English spelling and comprehension. The shirt featuring the likeness of Buddha, which reads “I MAY BE FAT BUT MY COCK IS HUGE,” demonstrates blatant disrespect for a religious deity and the religion’s followers. One need only replace the image of Buddha with that of Jesus Christ and swap “fat” with “skinny” to see how offensive this would be to the Christian majority. Finally, the shirt that reads “HANG OUT WITH YOUR WANG OUT” features a caricature of a slanted-eyed, buck-toothed Chinese man wearing a queue and rice paddy hat and childishly holding his penis. This image is demeaning and painfully reminiscent of racist images in popular culture in the early 1900s.
Whether you intended to offend or be funny and irreverent is not the issue. The issue is that the shirts are plainly offensive. Images like those on shirts sold by Spencer Gifts serve to promote the misleading notion that Asians are exotic foreigners to be insulted and ridiculed without consequence.
The shirts are not funny, innovative, novel, or edgy. They are racist and degrading and I demand an official public apology and a recall of the aforementioned shirts. Until then, I vow to boycott all Spencer Gifts stores and encourage others to do the same.
Email the execs:
President and CEO
EVP and CFO
Michael D. (Mike) Champion
Manager, Promotion and Publicity
Call or write to corporate headquarters:
Spencer Gifts, LLC
6826 Black Horse Pike
Egg Harbor Township, NJ 08234
Company Profile from Hoovers.com
Teen years are peppered with trips to mall-based Spencer Gifts for lava lamps, posters, whoopee cushions, and the fuzzy dice dangling from your rearview mirror. Other products include apparel, jewelry, room decor, and seasonal items, including Halloween merchandise. The retailer is expanding its home products selection to appeal to young people looking to adorn their dorm rooms or apartments. Founded in 1947, the novelty gift retailer was acquired in 2003 by Gordon Brothers Group from Vivendi UNIVERSAL Entertainment. Spencer Gifts operates more than 640 shops in the US and Canada, as well as about 130 seasonal Spirit Halloween Superstores in the US.