This product image released by Ralph Lauren shows U.S. Olympic...

This product image released by Ralph Lauren shows U.S. Olympic athletes modeling the the official Team USA Opening Ceremony Parade Uniform. Credit: AP

The United States Olympic Committee and designer Ralph Lauren failed to grab the gold in the opening ceremony competition. Team USA uniforms ought to be made in the USA.

The Olympic committee's inexplicable move to have the unappealing red, white and blue outfits made in China did accomplish one stunning feat: It united Congressional Democrats and Republicans in outrage. That bunch usually can't agree on which way is up.

"They should take all the uniforms, put them in a big pile and burn them and start all over again," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said, "You'd think they'd know better."

They don't. Committee spokesman Patrick Sandusky called the outrage over the uniforms nonsense.

While it's true that stitching a few berets, blazers, trousers, scarves and skirts wouldn't have made a dent in the unemployment rate or reinvigorated the U.S. textile industry, symbolism is powerful. Pride should have been reason enough for the committee to insist the uniforms be made on our shores.

The textile industry has largely fled to less costly labor markets, but America does still make clothes. There's a Hugo Boss plant in Cleveland. And Rochester-based suitmaker Hickey Freeman is ready and willing to step in, said Sen. Charles Schumer.

Amazingly this isn't the first time U.S. Olympic gear was made elsewhere. In the 2002 Winter Games -- with Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney at the helm -- American athletes wore berets made in Canada, which raised some eyebrows. And portions of the uniforms Ralph Lauren designed for the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing and the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver reportedly were also made in China.

Enough already. USA! USA!


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