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Activist Communiqué

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Krystalline Kraus is an intrepid journalist and veteran reporter for rabble.ca since its 2001 beginnings. She needs neither a red cape nor safety goggles to fly into her latest political assignment. She often live-tweets from events -- almost exclusively First Nations and environmental issues. You can follow her on Twitter @krystalline_k.

Activist Communique: Help ban this racist T-shirt: 'My Indian Name is Runs-With-Beer'

| July 30, 2011
Activist Communique: Help ban this racist T-shirt: 'My Indian Name is Runs-With-Beer'

Cafe Press is selling a T-shirt with the image of a white woman in a Native American war bonnet drinking a beer, with the words "My Indian name is Runs-With-Beer."

A complaint to Cafe Press was launched and the shirt temporarily pulled from sale, but it's back again.

Here is the seller's caption: "Girl indian name Shirt
Designer: Hey What's That Say ?!
Product ID: 219368683
Date Created: January 26, 2008 at 6:45 PM

For the GALS who love the suds: My Indian Name is Runs With Beer!"

Racism isn't funny.

Please contact Cafe Press and post your comment here.

Customer Service line CafePress.com (877) 809-1659
Monday - Saturday 9:00 am - 9:00 pm EST

Home OfficeCafePress Inc.
1850 Gateway Drive, Suite 300
San Mateo, California 94404
Phone: 650-655-3000
Toll Free: 877-809-1659
Fax: 650-655-3008
Email: info@cafepress.com



Does ANYONE out there really believe that the designer of this t-shirt INTENDED to offend any native/aboriginal person?

This shirt is a joke, people. It plays on a the descriptive quality of names that is present in all languages. It says NOTHING negative about a native/aboriginal culture. Indeed, it could more likely be construed as indicating a drinking problem amongst European-descended people since the woman depicted is presumably "white".


Come on, commentators can't be so ill-educated as to believe that any image that hints at a stereotype is automatically "racist"...especially since the word "racism" (in contemporary English) always carries a negative conotation.




Now before you say "Well, the idea of the alcoholic Indian...", ask yourself where that idea came from. In your own political correctness, YOU may be succumbing to a subtle racism.

I know many Miccosukee and Seminoles here in Florida and, virtually without exception, they all have a sense of humor. They can laugh at themselves...and even at some stereotypes, just like the Irish, Poles, Britons, Russians, etc. This doesn't mean that they like all the stereotypes, just that they are secure adults, not petulant children.


What they really HATE, though, is the patronizing of their PC "defenders". This is because they understand the diminuation that takes place when other people think someone is so sensitive as to be INFANTILE in the face of mild words. They know that the sensitive-to-everything PC crowd attributes such childish insultability to them by implication...and, as adult men and women, THEY DON'T LIKE IT.


Again, come on, folks! Don't look for offense on the part of others, especially when it's EXTREMELY LIKELY that such offense was NEVER intended. Doing so only diminishes the people whom you think you are "protecting"; it makes them look weak and pathetic.

Hmmm. All the "Indians" I know are way better than that.
Friends, please don't strip away peoples' dignity by treating them like dependent babies who require other people to be hyper-sensitive for them. Such PC-ness makes "victims"; it NEVER helps them.

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