There’s nothing quite like a change of power to expose hypocrisy. Yesterday, the Washington Post ran a long and flattering discussion of fashion designers who are just in anguish that their artistic talents could be abused in the service of a cause they despise. In other words, they don’t want to “dress” Melania or Ivanka Trump.
In an open letter rejecting the idea of working with the Trumps, designer Sophie Theallet said, “We value our artistic freedom, and always humbly seek to contribute to a more humane, conscious, and ethical way to create in this world.” She said, “As an independent fashion brand, we consider our voice an expression of our artistic and philosophical ideas.”
Post fashion critic Robin Givhan doesn’t just report on this choice, she goes out of her way to justify and explain it:
Like other creative individuals, Theallet sees fashion as a way of expressing her views about beauty and the way women are perceived in society. Fashion is her tool for communicating her world vision. In the same way that a poet’s words or a musician’s lyrics are a deeply personal reflection of the person who wrote them, a fashion designer’s work can be equally as intimate. In many ways, it’s why we are drawn to them. We feel a one-to-one connection.
You see, “clothes are commodities, certainly, but they also have an artful point of view that is distinctly personal.” That’s why, Givhan says, refusing to dress the Trumps “is not the equivalent of refusing service.” And so, Givhan concludes, “for those designers for whom fashion serves as their voice in the world, they should not feel obligated to say something in which they do not believe.”
I agree with Givhan. Don’t make anyone “dress” political figures they don’t like. Don’t make any artists use their talents to advance viewpoints they find offensive. There are designers who are happy to work with Trumps. Others aren’t. Big deal. Life goes on.
But if there is a single person who thinks that Sophie Theallet, Marc Jacobs, Derek Lam, and others have a right to refuse to dress the Trumps, but also believes that Christian bakers, photographers, and florists have to use their talents to celebrate gay weddings — there’s a word for you: Hypocrite. Indeed, you’re likely worse than a garden-variety hypocrite. You’re almost certainly malicious and elitist to boot.
Consider the parallels. Photographers, bakers, and florists are using their individual artistic talents not just to document but to celebrate an event. Many of them enter their profession to express their own views about “beauty” and do their work to glorify God. Their art is their best tool for “communicating their world vision.”
But all too many on the Left just don’t care. All that matters is that they refused to use their artistic talents for a gay couple. And aren’t LGBT people protected from discrimination? But wait, aren’t Melania and Ivanka also women? And aren’t women a protected class under nondiscrimination law also?
You begin to see the silliness of the argument. Yes, Melania and Ivanka are women, but that’s incidental and irrelevant compared with their political identity. The designers aren’t refusing to dress the Trumps because of their gender but because of their presumed worldview. Similarly, when a baker or florist works with gay men and women all the time and just draws the line when they’re asked to help celebrate a same-sex wedding, they’re objecting to a particular idea, not refusing service based on status. If a black baker refuses to bake a Confederate-flag cake, is he refusing because of the race of the customer or the symbolism of the flag?
Because if leftists didn’t have such double standards, they’d have no standards at all….
We are see liberals for what they truely are a bunch of selfish self centered liberals and products of the ME generation their spoiled little snotbuckets too used to always getting their way when Obama was stilll new in the whitehouse now that Obamas time is almost up we see them for what they realy are Stupid,Arrogant and Ungreatful little spoiled brats
Printing business has First Amendment and RFRA right to refuse to print gay pride festival T-shirts
Greg to respond and defend those who do not want to “dress” Melania or Ivanka in………………………1………………..2………………..3……
Everyone has the Constitutional right to say anything the liberals approve of.
Hey, when was the last time the left accused conservatives of trying suppress the 1st Amendment?