Skate brand Baker has angered and offended a whole bunch of people with their new tshirt graphic ‘Gooks of Hazzard’. The graphic features the skaters Don Nguyen and Daniel Shimizu depicted in a cartoony style in a rice rocket- “General Li” (okay, that’s kinda funny) in an obvious spoof of the Dukes of Hazzard show. The skaters apparently signed off on the graphic. The graphic also features an opening line, “Good Orr Boys” … a play on the stereotype of an Asian accent.
The Asian American Justice Centre ain’t happy… stating it’s “unacceptable for Baker Skateboards to create a depiction of Asian Americans which uses racial slurs and perpetuates racist stereotypes… Baker Skateboards, and the outlets that sell this shirt, should be aware that use of the term ‘gook’ on their apparel is offensive and quite simply amounts to racism for sale. No one should seek to profit from racism.”
Bobby Hundreds also wasn’t thrilled with the graphic either, though defended it on his blog on the grounds of anti-censorship and the tone being fitting with the Baker brand. “Is the t-shirt offensive? Yes. Did it offend me? Yes! It did. I don’t believe it’s right, mainly because political correctness holds a double standard with Asian epithets. Simply put, Baker wouldn’t print the same t-shirt with a couple of black dudes and N-bombs blasted across the front. But this is Baker. This is Skateboarding. And Skateboarding isn’t a corporate office of businessmen. It’s a buncha friends sitting around at a bar, being as loud and obnoxious and offensive as they can be.”
True dat. So what do y’all think? We’ve done some office canvassing and our resident Asian (well, one of them) Vinny Tang loves it and has been searching to buy it online. He is an asshole though.