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Man shocked his law office hired 'little person' to dress as a leprechaun. AITA?

Man shocked his law office hired 'little person' to dress as a leprechaun. AITA?


Many culturally-based holidays are complicated by commercialized celebration.

The day becomes more about the surrounding celebratory aspects than the initial reasons for marking the date. The Easter Bunny, Santa Clause and Cupid are just a few examples of how we, as a society, have monetized and popularized originally staunchly pious or historic holidays. St. Patrick's Day is perhaps the holiday that has been most altered from it's original significance.

Don't get me wrong, it's a blast! Modernizing and expanding the meaning and celebration of holidays can be a wonderfully uniting thing. But, one man write about how he was concerned when he found out his law firm was hiring a little person to perform as a leprechaun at their St. Patrick's Day party. Now, he is wondering if he should object, or if his objection would be taking away work from a willing little person.

WIBTA if I complained about a leprechaun?


I (35m) work at a large international law firm that is generally pretty progressive. (For privacy reasons I’m not going to name it here.) We have offices all over the world and last year acquired a law firm in a major city in the US that does a certain specialty of law.

Almost all the lawyers and staff were kept in the merger. The old law firm was very old school, both in operation and attitude.

(Lots of entitled old rich white man energy, the lawyers treated their secretaries as personal assistants and the partners, even now, they often send emails to IT saying “my (private) cell phone isn’t working fix it” or emails to office services telling them to get them batteries for their children’s toys, to give you an idea of what I’m talking about.)

While I am an attorney, I work in a non-attorney department where my JD is very helpful (think conflicts, IT, etc.)

A new managing partner was recently appointed, and while I have no problem with him personally, he has decided that everyone needs to be more “social” and is organizing multiple events a month centered around alcohol.

I don’t drink personally (and frankly I’m not spending my free unpaid time drinking with people I see all day) but I’m not required to go and I don’t really care if other people want to do that.

I recently got an invitation to a work sponsored event for St. Patrick’s Day, which normally I would just ignore. But apparently they have decided to hire a little person who performs as a leprechaun to walk around and talk to people as well as do some sort of a quiz game.

My immediate reaction is disgust, and several of my colleagues my age share my sentiment. While I’m not Irish, my understanding is that leprechauns are a belittling stereotype of Irish people, a drunken trickster hiding gold. It feels really weird and uncomfortable to know the firm is paying for a little person to basically dance for their amusement.

(I am polish, and I will say that if they had an event for a polish holiday I would be incredibly personally offended if that had someone there playing the role of a stupid drunk Polack.)

Apparently lots of the older attorneys are really excited about this, and as a rule I don’t want to “yuck someone’s yum” if it’s not hurting anyone. I also don’t want to be the person ruining everyone else’s fun.

So my question is, WIBTA if I complained to HR about this? Am I being overly sensitive/a killjoy? I don’t know who else to ask about this so I figured I’d throw it out to Reddit to see what the consensus is. I will accept whatever judgment is given.

Here is how people reacted after reading the OP's post:


NTA... do what you think is right. I'm sure the other employees that are treated like personal servants will appreciate it. Assuming that HR does a damn about it.


Little people need jobs too. How do you know it wasn't their dream to play a leprechaun. Warwick Davis made a career out of it. Honestly Irish people just don't get easily offended.


NAH. I'm not Irish - or American, for that matter - but I don't think that Irish consider leprechauns to be a belittling stereotype of them. It's just more an overdone trope that they consider a bit twee.

I would leave any complaints to be made by Irish people, or Irish Americans. You might find it distasteful, but don't get offended on their behalf.


You would NBTA for complaint about this to HR but consider just not going and having others that disagree with it not go as well. The performer also probably needs the money and does this for a living and you would be depriving him of income.

Just don’t go and have the others not go and they will see that it is not appropriate for the future.


YTA. Don't get offended on other people's behalf.


This is a tough call because the potential to 'muddy the water' is severe. What are you hoping for from HR? I can almost guarantee nothing will change. But you will be the troublemaker/villain.

As Irish, the leprechaun thing is not about drinking, it's about good fortune, the last known real sighting of a leprechaun was outside a pub in Ireland. The whole drinking on St. Patrick Day is really a US thing sort of like corned beef and cabbage. Which lead to the drunken leprechaun.


There's nothing more annoying then someone who gets offended for someone else and Op Hr isn't going to do anything anyway. im going with NAH because you have good intentions but until they do something about Poland keep your mouth shut.

So, what do you think? Do you think this is offensive or should he respect the wishes of performer to make a living as they please?

Sources: Reddit
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