Opinion: Racist, thoughtless styles shouldn’t be new fad


Bstroy’s official Instagram

Dress Code? This is one of the many hoodies that include the names of schools involved in shootings with bullet holes for effect.

Catherine Coppersmith, Guest Writer

It’s time to stop allowing controversial and racist imagery to get a pass in the fashion world.

Many popular brands don’t have a clean record when it comes to allowing controversial items in their collections. Chinyere Ezie, a staff attorney for the Center for Constitutional Rights, wrote on Facebook, “Today, after returning to NYC after a very emotional visit to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture including an exhibit on blackface, I walked past Prada’s Soho storefront only to be confronted with the very same racist and denigrating #blackface imagery.”

Kari Beery, an English teacher, is very adamant about equality and fairness in society. She said, “This desensitizes the impact of violence and discrimination and dehumanization and I don’t like that culture tries to normalize that, something that’s not normal. It makes me highly uncomfortable.”

Columnist Chimmy Lawson from Independent News displayed understandable confusion when analyzing the topic. Lawson wrote, “In a time where comments and captions sit on conveyor belts waiting to be scrutinised on social media, how did Perry and Gucci think that this was going to go unnoticed?”

Daisha Levy, a counselor who mostly works with seniors, thinks the fashion items are rude and ignorant. “It’s clearly stating a particular era that people went through and they are trying to make a profit, which is weird to me.  It doesn’t make sense, it’s insensitive, and it doesn’t pay respects to what has happened in the past,” said Levy.

The controversial items aren’t secluded to racist products, but also products that profit from school shootings, suicide, and the Holocaust. In reaction to Bstroy’s hoodie, Delaney Tarr, a survivor of the Parkland shooting said on Twitter, “This is disgusting. Unacceptable. Bullet holes?? People died. People DIED. Jesus.”

Beery and Tarr had similar points of view when referring to making a profit from these items. Beery said, “I don’t think this is anything that should be glorified and profited on, and if they are making any sort of money off of this, they should give the money towards some sort of charity that would only empower the people affected.”

Levy aired her frustrations when it comes to using controversial imagery for publicity. She said, “I don’t know how that happened and how that’s okay, but definitely they need to change their procedures because if they are going to be ignorant to the fact that it’s going to offend people there is someone there that needs to provide that knowledge.”

Instead of having ignorant pieces that are put up for a profit there should be a larger market for expanding the good in the world. “We should be protecting children and finding stuff that says ‘sit with your friends at lunch, be kind, be more inclusive, help people with mental illness.’ There are so many people who can’t navigate their own problems and don’t know how to cope anymore and we all have problems, but we don’t go out and violently hurt one another,” said Beery.