#BoycottDolceGabbana and the Ignorance of Class Privilege

The legendary Sir Elton John wants us to #BoycottDolceGabbana after fashion designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana said deplorable, outdated, fucked-up-shit about gay couples raising children. In an interview with the Italian Panorama magazine, the famed fashion artists called children born through in vitro fertilization (IVF) “synthetic children.”

“We oppose gay adoptions. The only family is the traditional one. No chemical offsprings and rented uterus: life has a natural flow, there are things that should not be changed.”

“You are born to a mother or father — or at least that’s how it should be. I call children of chemistry synthetic children. Rented uterus, semen chosen from a catalogue.”

Yikes. Their anti-gay stance is even more infuriating, considering they identify as gay themselves and actually dated each other. But hey, self-hate makes you do stupid things.

In response to these atrocious remarks, Sir Elton John, a noted figure who conceived two children through IVF with partner David Furnish, took to social media to demand a boycott of the fashion house. Trending on Twitter, close to 50,000 tweets were sent with the hashtag. Parents who also conceived children through the controversial process, members of the LGBTQ community, and allies alike have tweeted their support.

But, another trend is brewing; the very notion that people can afford to boycott D&G to begin with.

We all know how expensive D&G items are. Hell, a few pieces in their collection equate to a lifetime of student loan debt for me. So, it’s very easy for me — and others in my precarious financial bracket — to boycott a company that doesn’t market, appeal, or cater to us in anyway.

Whether intentional or not, Sir Elton (and his estimated net worth of upwards of $440 million) wasn’t speaking to us mortals — he’s talking to his exclusive entourage of celebrity friends who regularly sport D&G at their midday tea parties and award show appearances.

The entire situation is riddled in class privilege. IVF itself is an expensive process, averaging $12,000 – $15,000. And although there are options for financial coverage, and costs vary from clinic to clinic, the basic point remains that only those with some element of class privilege can afford the process.

This boycott isn’t meant for most of us; the working class folks who can’t afford to keep up with the latest and greatest in overpriced fabric –fabric sewn by the hands of underpaid Chinese child labor.

And, if my common sense antennas are at all correct, representatives from both D&G and Sir Elton, have already talked in an effort to mend the sullied relationship. That’s class privilege — the resources and access that come with a fat bank account, and can be used to quickly correct social harms.

In many ways, Sir Elton John’s call to action is a fine example of intersectionality — how oppression works to isolate and subjugate interrelated socioeconomic demographics. I support the LGBTQ community, and support the boycott of a mega fashion house whose profits are driven by wealthy members of LGBTQ Establishment. But let’s be clear … there’s levels to this shit. And this boycott isn’t about economic empowerment or social equity — this is a battle between two wealthy factions that don’t represent the large majority of us.

Godspeed.

*Feature Image Credit: www.chaos-mag.com

Photo on 6-15-14 at 12.18 PMArielle Newton, Founder/Editor-in-Chief. Get at me @arielle_newton. Get at us @BlkMillennials.

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2 responses to “#BoycottDolceGabbana and the Ignorance of Class Privilege

  1. Pingback: Rich Celebs Want you to Boycott Dolce & Gabbana, or Something | Today In Cats·

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