It’s been a little over six months since Mike Jeffries, one of the few openly gay business leaders, resigned as CEO of Abercrombie & Fitch after several quarters of slumping sales and bad press.
Over the years, 70-year-old Jeffries, who joined the company in 1992, developed a reputation for expressing his unfiltered douche bag opinions–from claiming the company only hires “good-looking” employees to admitting it doesn’t make large sizes because it fears “fat” and “unpopular” people wearing its logo.
With Jeffries finally out of the picture, the flailing mall clothing chain is desperately trying to rebrand itself as something more than an extension of its leaders ego. Here’s how…
Jeffries had a thing against the color black. He hated it. Loathed it. Believed it to be too formal for the brand, equating it with tuxedos. So he banned it. Not just from stores, but from the Abercrombie offices, as well. Employees at corporate headquarters were forbidden from wearing it to work.
“Management will tell people that Mike hates the color, and so we’re not supposed to wear it,” an employee, who asked to remain anonymous, confessed to Business Insider. “It even applies to coats in the winter.”
Today, Abercrombie has lifted its ban on the color black and now sells it in stores. Ahh, black. So elegant. So slimming.
Those homoerotic ads
When it came to A&F’s marketing campaigns, Jeffries’ philosophy was “less is more.” And by “less,” we mean less clothing.
Under his direction, A&F’s ads featured near-naked or completely naked male models. Often they resembled Jeffries himself in his younger years–blonde-haired, blue-eyed, Midwestern farm boy–and struck pretty obvious homoerotic poses. And the opposite sex always felt like a bit of an afterthought.
While we have to give Jeffries credit for using homoeroticism to sell clothing, ultimately the shock value went stale. The novelty effect wore off and consumers not longer cared. The brand has announced that it’s scaling back on the scantily-clad models and will instead focus on more wholesome images that actually feature the clothing it’s trying to sell.
Honestly, we’re not sure how we feel about this.
And they went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. And when they had come up to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them. So, passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, "Come over to Macedonia and help us." And when Paul had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them. - Acts 16:6-10
“So, passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, "Come over to Macedonia and help us." And when Paul had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.” (Acts 16:8-10).
Tempted and tried, we’re oft made to wonder
Why it should be thus all the day long;
While there are others living about us,
Never molested, though in the wrong.
Farther along we’ll know more about it,
Farther along we’ll understand why;
Cheer up, my brother, live in the sunshine,
We’ll understand it all by and by.
Sometimes I wonder why I must suffer,
Go in the rain, the cold, and the snow,
When there are many living in comfort,
Giving no heed to all I can do.Refrain
Tempted and tried, how often we question
Why we must suffer year after year,
Being accused by those of our loved ones,
E’en though we’ve walked in God’s holy fear.Refrain
There was a time when the only conceivable way to find support as an LGBT person was to relocate to a major metropolitan area, which is one of the reasons cities like New York, Chicago, S.F. and L.A. became gay meccas.
With the internet came a new outlet for seeking the understanding and company (all be it digital company) of others who feel similarly outcast.
Still, it can be tough to be gay in a small town or rural area. We wanted to hear from some of these guys, if for no other reason than to show they aren’t alone, and that there’s a whole gay world out there to engage in.
Here are some of the stories shared on Whisper:
The Guardian gets it right in interviewing Diana Serra Cary, once known as Baby Peggy, calling her the last silent movie star. She truly is the last human being on earth who knew inarguable stardom in the Silent Era. (She's among the last dozen known to still be alive who ever appeared in a silent film.)
By way of explaining her incredible memory of events that occurred when she was a toddler, Cary says:
“I was perceptive. I was a child who paid attention to her surroundings. Even in the very beginning, I had a kind of arm’s-length attitude towards everything. It was there, in front of me, and I observed it very seriously. It was something about my nature, and it was why I came to like writing, I think. That seeing-at-a-distance.”
This memory is on display in her must-read memoirs. (She's also written other books on the subject of movie history.)
Her money quote has to do with her concern for how children are (still) treated in Hollywood:
“I could find hundreds of studies about the effects of children watching too many movies. But nothing about the effects of being in them.”
The insightful piece also includes new portraits and interviews with silent survivors Jack C. Edwards (he isn't on Wikipedia's list of still-living silent actors, possibly because he was usually an extra), Lassie Lou Ahern and Mildred Kornman.
There’s nothing sweeter than being able to say “told you so.” With marriage equality potentially approaching in as little as a month, there are going to be lots of opportunities for pioneering pro-equality politicians to say exactly that.
But we should resist that temptation. Instead, let’s take a moment to celebrate the thought leaders and trend-setters who were brave enough to change their minds about the freedom to marry. Let’s face it: Sometimes it’s easier to promote your own cause than see the beauty of another’s, especially when you are surrounded by people engaging in group-think.
Related Posts: See all of Queerty’s #ToastToMarriage coverage
The folks, many well meaning conservatives and religious leaders, spent most of their careers surrounded by people who oppose the freedom to marry, but they nonetheless came out to publicly support LGBT equality — or at least, to shut up and stop opposing it as strongly as they once did. And they took heat for it.
Where once they might have been repulsed by the mere notion of same-sex marriage, today they’re clamoring aboard the unstoppable marriage freedom train. And we could not be happier to have them by our side.
Cleveland cop Michael Brelo was found not guilty in the deaths of two unarmed black people, a case that began with nothing more than the backfiring of a car and ended with two people shot more than 20 times each.
The backfiring noise led to a long car chase and one-way shoot-out. At the end, Brelo stood on the hood of the car and fired 15 rounds directly into Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams.
The shooting was an outrageously disproportionate response. To decide the cops (they fired 137 times into the car) acted appropriately is to say that the police are allowed to do anything they like to anyone they like as long as they have a belief they're in danger at all, even if the belief is unfounded and, ultimately, inaccurate.
Been together over 14 yrs love this man with all my ??!
Me(Left) and my boyfriend Mike(Right) going on almost two years and Happier than we have ever been :):)
Hold Your Peace
Director: Wade McDonald
Cast: Chad Ford, Tyler Brockington, Aleisha Force, Scott Higgins
USA | 2011 | 96 min
Aiden is asked to be the best man at his ex-boyfriend’s commitment ceremony. Rather than risk going alone, he finds the most unlikely of dates in his roommate’s more ‘stereotypical’ friend, Lance. As time goes on, he discovers that things are far more complex than he thought he could handle.
By an overwhelming margin, voters in Ireland have chosen to legalize marriage equality in the country, making it the first nation in the world to do so by popular vote. Support for marriage cut across age, gender, income and region; out of 43 districts in the country, only one voted against the measure. (Even Ireland has its Alabama.)
While the vote has no legal implications beyond Ireland’s borders, the victory will still have an impact on U.S. politics. Here are five reasons why today’s win in Ireland will make a difference in this country.
1. Ireland is one of the most Catholic nations in the world. The vote was a thumb in the eye of Irish bishops who made a last-ditch appeal to the faithful, who haven’t forgiven the bishops for the Church’s child-abuse scandals. The bishops’ failure shows how frayed the Church’s hold is on those in the pews. Worse still, it’s not as if pro-marriage Catholics felt that they were bucking the Church. In fact, many believed that they were following Church teachings that demand fairness. The power of the Catholic Church isn’t what it once was in Ireland. But what diminishes the Church’s hold there will inevitably hurt the hierarchy in the U.S. as well. After all, the Church is a global corporation.
2. Support cut across party lines. Amazingly, the entire Irish political establishment lined up for marriage equality. That’s not likely to happen any time soon in the U.S., at least as long as the Mike Huckabee-Ted Cruz wing of the GOP is around. But it is a harbinger of the future. At some point, it’s inevitable that marriage equality simply fades as a political football. You can still be a conservative and be pro-marriage equality. There are plenty of other ideological battles that liberals and conservatives can fight. As Ireland showed, marriage equality doesn’t have to be one of them.
3. The pro-family argument was on the side of marriage equality. Here’s a nice twist: in Ireland, marriage equality was seen as the pro-family position. Family is important both culturally and legally in Ireland, with the constitution explicitly protecting family as “a moral institution possessing inalienable and imprescriptable rights.” This is a lesson for the U.S., where conservative Christians have misappropriated the mantle of family values. As the definition of family expands, opposition to marriage equality can only be seen as anti-family.
4. Demographics are on the side of equality. The vote in Ireland proved yet again that young people are overwhelmingly supportive of marriage equality. Some 66,000 young people registered to vote in advance of the referendum. At some point, that lesson can’t be lost on recalcitrant Republicans in the U.S., at least some of whom know in their hearts that they are on the point of losing a generation of voters.
5. There go the St. Patrick Day’s parade bans. Perhaps the most immediate impact of the marriage vote in Ireland will be on St. Patrick Day parades. Parade organizers have had a hard time maintaining their outright ban on gay groups in the parades, but they are going to look especially silly now that Ireland itself has vaulted into the forefront of LGBT rights. If the country itself can overwhelmingly support marriage, how can the once-a-year Irish in the U.S. prevent gay groups from marching in the parade? That’s going to be a tough question to answer without looking stupid, but we’re confident that the parade organizers can do it. Look stupid, that is.
Photo credit: YesEquality Facebook page
Aceito (I do)
Director: Felipe Cabral
Cast: Felipe Cabral, Jefferson Schroeder, Claudia Sardinha, Felipe Haiut, Julia Stockler, Karin Dreyer, Karina Ramil, Luiza Maldonado, Luiza Yabrudi, Matheus Malafaia, Samantha Gahyva, Thaissa Yumi, Thiago Menezes
Brazil | 2014 | 21 min
POR - Após alguns bons anos de relacionamento, Junior decide pedir seu namorado André em casamento. Ele resolve transformar esse momento em uma ocasião inesquecível e convida todos os amigos do casal para uma surpresa. Todos deverão ficar escondidos dentro do quarto do casal até ouvirem a palavra “Aceito”, porém as coisas não saem conforme o esperado. A comédia levanta de forma divertida a questão de legitimar o amor através do casamento civil, direito conquistado recentemente pelos homossexuais no Brasil. “Precisamos casar para oficializar nosso amor?”, questiona um dos personagens. Agora que eles possuem os mesmos direitos dos heterossexuais, eles precisam se casar?
ENG - When Junior decides to ask the love of his life to marry him, he invites all their friends for a surprise play. They have to hide in the bedroom until they hear the words “I do” but things don’t turn out like he planned them.
Happy boys at a happy hour.
Celebrating four years with my dapper gent!
Early vote counts say Ireland has become the first nation in the world to OK same-sex marriage by popular vote.