Whenever I’m in the mood for a good dose of absurdity, I walk into the nearest JC Penny. What I found today: the “America is Baseball” t-shirt.
Ah, America is Baseball. And hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet. But this particular baseball is ripping through the American flag depicted on the t-shirt. The flag is being ripped apart: does that make it terrorist apparel? But ripped or not, the flag is there, rippling in a way that defies the physics of a high-speed baseball: does that make it a patriotic shirt? If it is a patriotic t-shirt, does the fact that it’s actually made in Honduras overrule that? How about the fact that JC Penny is able to sell the shirt for $4.99, necessitating low, low “labor costs” (the sanitized way to talk about pay for workers) in order to make the venture worthwhile. Is that consonant with American values?
Maybe, sadly, it is. But I can tell you one thing: no t-shirt like the one lying next to it, bearing the words “AMERICAN to the CORE,” should be made in El Salvador. Not unless the producer is trying to make a low-wage funny.