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Donald Trump’s mispronunciation blunder prompts surge in ‘Yo Semite’ t-shirt sales



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Donald Trump’s mispronunciation of the name of Yosemite National Park has boosted sales of a t-shirt emblazed with the words “Yo Semite”.

The National Museum of American Jewish History has experienced an uptick in demand for the t-shirt after the US President pronounced Yosemite (“yo-sem-it-ee”) as “yo semites” during the signing of the Great American Outdoors Act on August 4.

Mr Trump – who has also previously raised eyebrows after misspelling hamburgers as “hamberders” and pronouncing Thailand as “thighland” – was praising the beauty of the national park’s trees when he made his slip up.

The jovial “Yo Semite” shirt has been on sale since 2011, and has been a popular item among shoppers at the Jewish history museum’s physical and online stores, according to Emily August, its director of communications and public engagement.

But its recent spike in popularity has bucked all previous trends, with the t-shirt receiving “unprecedented attention” of late, Ms August told US news outlet CNN.

“Sales of the ‘Yo Semite’ shirt increase anytime Yosemite is in the news, so we knew there would be an influx of orders of some volume and that we had a short window to ride the wave of the news cycle and social media attention,” she said.

“But I’m not sure we could have anticipated something of this scale and pace.”

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Ms August said the museum had been quick to promote the t-shirt on social media in the wake of Mr Trump’s gaffe, and described subsequent sales as “off the charts”.

She added that the museum is now working to fulfil orders as quickly as possible after selling what would typically amount to a month’s worth of the merchandise in just over 24 hours last week.

“When we first started tracking sales last week, we had sold enough shirts in the first 30 hours to equal almost our entire July sales,” Ms August said.

“And now, less than a week later, our total shirt sales have exceeded the prior three months of sales combined.”

The t-shirt was created by artist Sarah Lefton and reportedly inspired by her day job at a Jewish summer camp near Yosemite National Park, according to the Jewish history museum’s website.

Above the words “Yo Semite” are two trees that resemble sequoia trees, the likes of which Yosemite National Park is home to.

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