Decorative Addition to Your Home Bar or Assault on our Children?

Photo Courtesy of Joe Architect

Urban Outfitters is a store that carries funky fashion and household products. Targeting the 18 to 30 year old customer base, their products range from hip, kitschy, ironic and vintage. In other words, a little of everything just left of ordinary. I personally think of them as a sort of Pier I Imports store for the urbanite.

Okay, so there’s been a bit of a “buzz” stirring lately about some of their products. It was mentioned on our local television station and to be quite frank I was like, “Seriously? This is newsworthy?” I’ll let you be the judge.

There are many, many web sites that advertise products for your home – including your bar or entertainment area (which may include a bar). There are many, many web sites that also allow you to create your own t-shirts, with your own sayings, and you can put anything you want on them – in addition to selling them (like Zazzle).

These are two of the products in question that Urban Outfitters has listed under their APARTMENT section under the KITCHEN + BAR section. (Nothing wrong with that so far).

Prescription Shot Glass – Set of 3 – $14.00
Can Cooler $10.00

Now, let me be clear about something before I go any further. When I first saw these – I thought they were hilarious. Stupidly funny. A good gag for a party. Personally, I think that is all that they are meant to imply.

Unfortunately, it seems that what you and I would deem more ‘pressing’ political matters to tackle – oh say like homelessness, sex crimes, domestic violence, gun control, animal cruelty, hunger, unemployment, family values, rising food and gas prices – there are over 20 attorney generals that have joined with Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi accusing Urban Outfitters of “undermining” nationwide efforts to fight pharmaceutical-abuse because the stores sell a line of drinking novelties that mimic prescription-pill bottles, boxes, pads and syringes.

“These products are not in any way fun or humorous but make light of this rampant problem,” the group wrote in a letter addressed to Urban Outfitter’s CEO and chairman, Richard A. Hayne. “We invite you to pull these products from your shelves and join with us to fight prescription drug abuse.” (excerpt from The Miami Herald article)

Read more here: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/2013/05/pam-bondi-and-22-ags-to-urban-outfitters-stop-undermining-war-on-rx-abuse-.html#storylink=cpy
I am in no way making light of pharmaceutical abuse or underage drinking. Both are issues that need to be addressed, beginning with the family and counseling and/or treatment programs.
When is enough, enough though? Are the products in bad taste? To some, I’m sure they are. To others, they are just another example of what makes this country great – free enterprise. If we allow government and elected officials to deny us the right to sell certain products that they deem “unacceptable” where will it end? Before you know it, we’ll be back in the prohibition era if this keeps up.
Kmart sells shot glasses online along with a basketball drinking game. Walmart sells tons of different shot glasses online along with a Shoots and Ladders drinking game. Yeah – the game you played as a preschooler, you can now play when your grown and wanna get drunk.

Focus on the real issues that America is facing, not on silly, quirky, stupid things like selling prescription bottle-looking shot glasses. Do you agree or disagree?

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