Make It Go Away

What is wrong with people? Why would any white person in 2015 think that it is appropriate to design a line of expensive clothing and call it “Last Niggas in Paris”?

“Touitou ushered in a quartet of models wearing three different cuts of a camel overcoat and one check, all matched with gray sweatpants and A.P.C.-designed Timberlands. Then he held up a sign that said, “Last Ni##@$ IN PARIS,” and gave us this exposition: “I call this one look Last N****s in Paris. Why? Because it’s the sweet spot when the hood—the ‘hood—meets Bertolucci’s movie Last Tango in Paris. So that’s ‘N****s in Paris’ and Last N****s in Paris. [Nervous laughter from audience.] Oh, I am glad some people laughed with me. Yes, I mean, it’s nice to play with the strong signifiers. The Timberland here is a very strong ghetto signifier. In the ghetto, it is all the Timberlands, all the big chain. Not at the same time—never; it’s bad taste. So we designed Timberlands with Timberland…” And on he went. Touitou likes to be irreverent. But what he said here seemed ill considered, at the very least.”

There are SO many things wrong with this!  The audacity of a white man living in a white supremacist world so freely using the word nigga! For profit at that! Making reference to Black fashion as “hood”! Referring to a brand of shoes worn by Black people regardless of economic status  as a “strong ghetto signifier”! And he really believes that he knows what people in the “ghetto” wear! As if he has EVER set foot in a Black ghetto! “All the Timberlands, all the big chain” my ass!

He goes on to say that he showed the collection to Kanye, including the name of it, and Kanye liked the “vibe”.  Listen. I can’t say whether Kanye West gave this man a “pass” to use the word nigga.  I can say that whether he did or not is completely irrelevant, because common sense would suggest to a person with any inkling of sensitivity that Kanye does not and cannot speak on behalf of an entire race of people, many of whom are rightfully appalled at the very idea of a white person saying nigga!

Gah! My head hurts.