Okay now, there's some uncomfortable skinhead (of the non-black variety) stuff happening in Fear Of God's new "Brothers Keeper" F/W 13 lookbook: dudes with hand tattoos and buzzcuts and bomber jackets, smoking cigarettes. More or less, this is some unsavory shit. But anyone who's wearing Fear Of God is probably just a Kanye West stan and thus probably not racist. I mean, if anything, Ye is the one who's said some pretty uncool shit about Jewish people recently. Really, this whole white power aesthetic in general (including the Confederate flag Yeezus Tour stuff) needs a better explanation than the ones Kanye has been giving on his recent press junket. I think what he's getting at is something about how symbols and words only have power when we, as society, give them power. Like, the Confederate flag and skinheads are only offensive if you find them offensive.
Symbols and words are not static. But here's the problem: 99.9% of people don't view clothes on an intellectual level like that and maybe they shouldn't in the first place. Clothing is supposed to communicate a superficial message about the person wearing them, and as quickly as possible. The expectation that anyone will stop and think a Confederate flag is "ironic" is an unreasonable one. If you're white and dressing like a skinhead or wearing a Confederate flag in 2013, then expect everyone to think you're racist because, at this point in time, that's what those symbols mean. Then again, Jerry Lorenzo, Fear Of God's founder, is a person of color, so I'm not even sure if I'm allowed to criticize him for any of this. I guess we might as well just tiptoe away from this very serious discussion about racial and cultural appropriation and commerce's soft power in society and just say that I like side zips and flannels and fleece even if I don't like to pay hundreds of dollars for them. Fear Of God's new collection drops December 16.