Spike Lee And T.I. Join Call For Gucci Boycott Over ‘Blackface’ Sweater — Should The Brand Reach Out More?
Most recently, Italian luxury brand of fashion Gucci unveiled a wool balaclava sweater that sells for $890 on its website and physical stores, and it was rapidly removed because it created a major controversy.
The pricey sweater was described as “runway showpiece,” but people on social media called it a racist creation that was promoting blackface.
The black top, which is part of Gucci’s Fall Winter 2018 runway, was said to be inspired by “vintage ski masks,” and it features a high turtleneck that can cover the nose or just around the neck.
The issue lies with the design on the front of the turtle neck which is a red-lined cutout that resembles a pair of lips that reminds people of blackface.
Via social media, Gucci issued an apology saying, “we consider diversity to be a fundamental value to be fully upheld, respected, and at the forefront of every decision we make.”
Amid Black History Month, many have been calling for a boycott of Gucci, amongst them are rapper and activist Clifford Joseph Harris Jr., better known as T.I.
T.I. had this to say on the matter: “@gucci As a 7 figure/yr customer & longtime supporter of your brand I must say…Y’all GOT US f*cked UP!!! APOLOGY NOT ACCEPTED!!!! We ain’t going for this “oops my bad I didn’t mean to be racist and disrespectful towards your people” sh*t!!! Y’all knew wtf y’all was doing and WE AINT GOING FOR IT!!! We ALL GOTTA Stop buying, wearing, and supporting this piece of sh*t company And ALL PIECE OF SH*T COMPANIES UNTIL THEY LEARN TO RESPECT OUR DOLLARS & VALUE OUR BUSINESS!!!! Our culture RUNS THIS SHIT!!! We (People of color) spend $1.25 TRILLION/year (but are the least respected and the least included), and if we stop buying ANYTHING, they MUST correct any and ALL of our concerns. That’s THE ONLY WAY we can get some RESPECT PUT ON OUR NAME!!!! I Don’t Give a F*ck if I gotta wear Target brand sh*t…. #F*ckGucci.”
Oscar-nominated director Spike Lee has also joined The Grand Hustle host and announced his decision to no longer support luxury brands Gucci and Prada.