This is a poster up in UCD right now, promoting an Irish language coffee morning.
There is nothing immoral in going to Starbucks, but I do detect a certain irony in supporting the Irish language (which is a language in need of revival and preservation), while also using the iconography of (and giving free advertising to!) a franchise that has become a byword for globalization and homogenization-- the very forces that are, arguably, squeezing out national traditions and character everywhere.
Again-- there is nothing immoral in going to Starbucks, nor do I have anything against anyone who works there or goes there. Indeed, I've been to Starbucks a few times. It was in America. The service was excellent, the atmosphere was excellent, the iced frappé was lovely. I even love their logo. But I don't want every café to be a Starbucks. I want some cafés to have rickety tables and hard scones and two flavours of sandwich and a person's name over the door. I want some cafés to be unique to that street, that town.
The members of the Irish language society could justly say to me-- "What are you doing to preserve national traditions? We're the ones speaking Irish."
And they'd be right. I'm not criticizing them. I just think it's a rather symbolic and telling image.