President Boyle’s Letter To Urban Outfitters

Mr Hayne, as the National President of the largest Irish American Organization in the United States, the Ancient Order of Hibernians in America, it is with great displeasure that I must write to you and ask that you immediately remove the disgusting products you have for sale in your stores depicting the Irish as Drunks and defaming the Irish Nation and the Patron Saint of Ireland, St Patrick.

St Patrick’s Day, March 17th, is a day when the Irish celebrate the patron saint of Ireland and yes we do celebrate in a respectful manner with many of us starting the day by attending Mass prior to marching in parades. There are those few who use this day as an excuse to over celebrate but that does not give you or anyone else the right to defame and debase a whole race of people by selling the garbage that you display in your stores.

For you or anyone else to have articles like the trucker’s cap depicting a drunk vomiting shamrocks or selling jugs such as the Leprechauns Piss Jug is culturally offensive and uncalled for. If this is the way you must make your money by debasing a whole race of people I can assure you that with over 40 million people in this country claiming Irish ancestry they will not be your customers after this display of arrogance and disrespect to a whole nation.

I ask, would you have the same type of garbage depicting the African American, Jewish or Muslim Nations emblazoned on your product? I think not. Why do it to the Irish? Perhaps it is because we are Catholic and you think you can get away with it, or is because you think we do not care about our heritage or perhaps because you just dont care about our nationality. Well Mr Hayne, we do care about our Heritage, our Religion and what the perception of us as a nation is, so I am sure you will be hearing from many more of our proud Irish American people throughout this country and abroad.

Thousands of our people shop at you stores throughout the country and with help of the news media, Irish and catholic organizations and the general public we will get the word out that Urban Outfitters does not have any respect for the Irish people or the Catholic Religion and we will ask them to Boycott your establishments.

If you have a change of heart and decide to do the right thing by immediately removing this offensive product from your stores please contact me and I will make sure that our people continue to shop your business.

Seamus Boyle National President
Ancient Order of Hibernians in America, Inc

Anger Over St. Patrick’s Day Items:


Denny’s Grand Slam Debacle

The AOH wasted no time in taking action against Denny’s restaurant for running a television advertisement which announced that in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the end of the Irish Famine, they would be offering unlimited pancakes for customers.

Infuriated members mobilized as President Boyle took swift action against Denny’s and sent a letter Denny’s explaining that the “Famine” was actually a starvation of the Irish people and more than a million and a half of our ancestors died because of it.  He went onto to say “You have the audacity to make fun of these people who died of starvation much worse than any genocide ever recorded in history, so that you can sell your product on the back of our dead ancestors. I have already contacted our members throughout the United States where Denny’s has a franchise to be ready to mobilize when needed. I am appalled at your advertisement as are all Irish and Irish Americans. We are not the only Irish American organization in the United States who are ready to let you know how we feel about our ancestors defamation so you can sell a product and make a profit.“

AOH members from around the country inundated a call center at Denny’s headquarters as e-mails and letters were written and many Facebook pages were setup protesting this despicable marketing ploy.  In the Philadelphia area AOH members were poised to picket their restaurants if the ad was not pulled from television.

Denny’s has been in hot water before for discriminatory treatment of African American customers and staff.  Some questions if their next advertisement might feature Denny’s offering pancakes in celebration of the end of the Holocaust and the deaths of six million Jews? An often critic of the AOH, Irish Voice Newspaper publisher Niall O’Dowd, publically praised our organization stating “I am delighted to see that the Ancient Order of Hibernians has rushed out a statement condemning this incredibly insensitive and hostile ad which has been shown all over America in the past few days.”

Denny’s said it was sorry if a mention of the Irish Potato Famine in its advertisements offended anyone.

Management said the restaurant chain based in Spartanburg, SC, apologizes to anyone who was insulted or offended by the TV advertisement, which promoted an all-you-can-eat deal by tying it to the 150th anniversary of the end of the potato famine. “It is certainly not the intention of the company to offend anyone or any group, and we apologize if this spot has in any way,” Denny’s management said in a statement. The advertisement was pulled within less than a week of its original airing amid numerous complaints and protest threats from the AOH and other Irish-Americans.