The United States Post Office has gone through some well-documented struggles in the past few years. It's hemorrhaging money by the millions (billions?) and has had to go to extreme cost-cutting measures, such as shutting down hundreds of branches and putting the kibosh on Saturday letter delivery.
Can the magic of Harry Potter & Co. save the USPS? That's what it's hoping, with the launch of 20 brand-spankin'-new Harry Potter themed stamps, whimsical scenes from the films that someone couldn't possibly find fault with, right?
According to The Washington Post, not all collectors are happy about the newest line of stamps, preferring that they had been more "American".
No, really. John Hotchner, the former president of the American Philatelic Society (the people who collect stamps, y'all) said that, "Harry Potter is not American. It’s foreign, and it’s so blatantly commercial it’s off the charts."
Don Schilling runs The Stamp Collecting Round-Up blog based in L.A. and argued that stamps "shouldn’t be reduced to the latest fads, whatever's going to sell."
There are so many things wrong with this line of thinking that I don't even know where to begin.
1.) The Harry Potter phenomenon is a global one, and has inspired children from all over the world to read and imagine and explore - even American children.
2.) Right now, the USPS has bigger issues to worry about than pleasing stamp collectors. Yes, the government is hoping Harry Potter stamps will show a spike in sales. Of course it is.
3.) If the USPS stops making money, stamps stop being made, and those same complaining stamp collectors will, ironically, no longer have stamps to collect.
This is why people say "'Murica" instead of "America", stamp collectors. This is why.
What do you think? Am I right to think these stamp collectors are being a little ridiculous, or do you agree that American stamps should always be 100% American themes? Let me know.