Christy Turlington, Julianne Moore, Cynthia Nixon, Rosie Perez and thirteen other celebrities have joined Fedoras for Fairness, a national campaign promoting a comprehensive immigration reform bill that treats women and LGBT families fairly.
Why a fedora? From the campaign website: "Originally worn by women’s rights activists in the early 20th century, the campaign is using the fedora—an iconic unisex American fashion accessory—as both a metaphor and symbol: a metaphor for women’s multiple roles and identities; a symbol of support for reform legislation that is inclusive of the needs of women."
Immigration issues are on the national stage right now as the House of Representatives gets ready to vote on the Senate's proposed bill, but Fedoras for Fairness draws attention to a multitude of policies that have been sidelined in the debate over whether or not any reform should include a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants currently in the U.S.
The campaign promotes a path to citizenship that incorporates the needs of women by recognizing the role of domestic work, ensuring protections to victims of violence and trafficking, and protecting the rights of families by preventing deportations that separate parents from their children.
The celebrity campaign was photographed by fashion photographer Albert Watson and the accompanying video (at the top) was directed by John Huba, based on the idea that immigration is part of the story of every American.
The tech industry has thrown its weight behind immigration reform in an attempt to bring more high-skilled foreign workers into the U.S., but at its heart, this is an issue that disproportionately affects the literally disenfranchised — people that have no vote, no power in our society. If we do pass a bill that lays out a path of citizenship to undocumented workers currently living in the U.S., especially according to the terms laid out by Fedoras for Fairness, it'll be an act of justice.
Submit your own photo and see the rest of the campaign on the Fedoras for Fairness website or tweet your support using the hashtag #Fairdora.
I realize we are in the minority, but there some among us who think that the Royal Baby news story is getting an amount of coverage that's massively, massively disproportionate to its interestingness. It's one thing to marvel at how shiny and happy Kate Middleton looks coming out of the hospital, wearing a blue Jenny Packham dress. I understand that people like babies and that the Duchess of Cambridge probably enjoys a higher approval rating than the Dalai Lama — no objections. But over the weekend and then all throughout Monday, it seemed like there was nothing else happening in the world, in terms of current events and public life. Serious news publications sent crews to camp out in front of the hospital for days on end, to cover the birth of a baby (an heir, okay, but an heir to a monarchy that's essentially a tourist attraction), who will have to spend years growing up before he will have any kind of impact on people outside his immediate family and close friends. The phrase "SO JOYOUS" may as well have been a trending topic, it showed up so often on my Twitter feed; and I tried and I tried but I couldn't figure out how actual real people could summon the feeling of joy over the birth of a total stranger's baby. You know what brings me joy? Hummus. "SO JOYOUS" is what I will now tweet forevermore, every time I eat some hummus.
I am not the only getting bristly about the Royal Baby craze. Simon Doonan, the Creative Ambassador at Barneys, voiced his own frustration with the way the birth played out in the media as part of a discussion that aired on this week's edition of the Slate Culture Gabfest podcast (titled "Kate Middleton Has a Vagina"). Doonan is a famous wit and also English, so therefore far more qualified than I am to speak on matters of monarchy. His remarks (my favorite is the part about crops…)
"If you look at Hello! magazine, there's endless coverage of boring European royals and their weddings and machinations so unless this baby grows up to become Caligula or something, it sort of remains deeply uninteresting. For some reason, I think the act of reproduction is simultaneously alarming and compelling, appalling and fascinating to people nowadays. I don't quite get why, because it's been going on for such a long time but, now when people get pregnant, they're examined and scrutinized — look how big I'm getting, blah blah blah. Whereas it was just a given before. It was like crops growing in the field. They weren't sort of like, shrieking [in the old days]. So it's fascinating as to why it's become such a flag in the cultural unconscious.
A very sanitized, idealized, celebrity cavalcade that we see every day, with tiny waists, and more tiny waists and women in high heels And being up the duff, to use an English expression … it's really sort of a horrible reality check about our biology that no amount of botox or airbrushing … there's no other way to do it. I guess celebrities do outsource their pregnancy now, don't they? But the women that still do it the old-fashioned way become an obsession, and… Blue Ivy, has she lost the baby weight? What will Blue Ivy wear? What will her nursery look like? What will blahblahblahblahblah. And here it's in the context of the royal family.
But the British papers, they're saying, 'The Middletons will save the monarchy.' I saw a few headlines like that, because I guess they're thinking the Middletons are so excruciatingly middlebrow, that they will make the monarchy somehow accessible to the coming generation. Whereas the queen, who was so drenched in history and gravitas and old-fashioned ritual and … remoteness — that would never have gone forward. So it's sort of the legacy that was started by Fergie and Diana, where the royal family were more Hello! magazine than Burke's Peerage. And so that's why the Middletons are all in the cupcake business. Which is a very contemporary thing to do, is to be in Hello! magazine and own a cupcake business. Basically, what I'm saying is they're irredeemably naff. And that is where the monarchy's going. And that may be, paradoxically, what saves it. For my generation though, we're just appalled. If they're going to be there, annoyingly sucking up all that money, they might as well at least have some bloody gravitas."
"All You're Waiting For" … is this video (!), made by the DJ duo Classixx and featuring former LCD Soundsystem member Nancy Whang on vocals. You will love it.
Wang plays a wealthy woman with ostentatious, flashy taste. She likes enormous jewels, silky gowns, puppies, martinis and watching shirtless sailors dancing on the deck of her yacht. What sane woman doesn't like those things? The video vacillates between an attraction to luxury and repulsion, a sense that despite their surface pleasures, shiny fancy things are meaningless — and in fact, ugly. That tension is common enough to pop music, but it's truly central to the video, which was produced to be featured as part of Urban Outfitter's Music Video Series. The clothing retailer doesn't have a problem printing rebellious, anti-establishment messages on its T-shirts, it doesn't have a problem promoting a video which makes fun of materialistic ambition, but don't think for a second that Urban Outfitters thinks you should stop spending so much money on things you don't really need.
Congratulations to Gossip singer Beth Ditto, who recently married her longtime girlfriend, former assistant Kristen Ogata, in Hawaii. The pair shared the first public photograph from the wedding on the band's Facebook page yesterday, which showed Ogata wearing a crisp white short suit and Ditto going barefoot in a playful knee-length Jean Paul Gaultier gown (the designer proudly tweeted the photo shortly after). In the picture, the newlyweds walk down the aisle against a tableau of white roses; they wear flowy garlands (these look like boas made out of vines and flowers — where can I get one?) as the guests, all dressed in crisp, sailboat-preppy whites, snap pictures of the happy couple. It would be sickeningly adorable if it weren't simply adorable.
Ditto — who has since appeared (naked) on the debut cover of LOVE, launched her own fashion line for the high street store Evans and collaborated with cosmetics giant M.A.C. — first became involved with the fashion industry when she walked the runway for Gaultier's Spring 2011 show.
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