When an eccentric (to put it mildly) fashion designer announces that people prefer to look at extremely thin models because fashion is about fantasy, and that the only people who object are “fat mummies” who “sit in front of the television eating bags of crisps,” one must wonder: how do we make sure a person like that does not have power over us?
Mr. Lagerfeld is certainly entitled to his own opinions, and free speech in the Western world dictates that he is also entitled to freely voice those opinions, regardless of how hateful, bigoted and offensive they are. The high fashion designer has never been afraid of controversy, defending fur against PETA, and – according to some reports – saying that model Heidi Klum is too heavy to be a runway model.
The real issue as far as I’m concerned is not Mr. Lagerfeld’s misogyny, but his power over women. A top fashion designer, Mr. Lagerfeld is widely regarded as a fashion guru and his fashion creations, featuring very structured, dramatic and feminine women’s wear, mostly in black and white, are considered as masterpieces.
As the recent love fest around child rapist Roman Polanski demonstrates, our society tends to forgive talented, ambitious, rich men their eccentricities, even their crimes. It is therefore highly unlikely that Mr. Lagerfeld will be pushed to the sidelines and ignored just because he hates women. We women however must make sure we put whatever this man says in the right context, as the personal opinions of someone with an extremely odd and unusual personality who lives in his own fantasy world, completely disconnected from the daily reality of most of us.
Loved this Comment: “Personally, I intend to protest by eating a bag of potato chips.” Els Withers.
Photo by siebbi