Everyone knows I’m the biggest proponent of the totally non-sarcastic, totally genuine slow clap. It’s just who I am. And today, I’d like to devote that heart-felt slow clap to stereotype shattering Abercrombie & Fitch CEO, Mike Jeffries. The activist believes offering XL and XXL sizes for women would encourage losers to shop at his store, while saying that parallel sizes for men must be included for athletes. Some people choose to dwell on what a sexist piece of crap Mike Jeffries is or how everyone should be able to wear a bunch of poor quality, sweat shop-produced, logo-ridden baby-tees, regardless of race, sex, or creed, if they so choose. They climb onto their soap boxes to talk about how size doesn’t make you cool or uncool, and that manufacturers of teen-focused clothing lines should be especially conscious of this. Now they all have egg all over their faces; Mike Jeffries is a homosexual.
Mike Jeffries truly is an inspiration as a gay CEO. Unfortunately, Corporate America is not the most progressive place. We rarely see anyone but white, straight males running large companies. And how wonderful that Jeffries, who is different than many of his peers, chooses to use his power to totally exclude and shame a portion of the population. It’s just like the time that Gretchen Wieners decided that Regina George couldn’t sit at the table with the rest of the plastics because she was wearing sweatpants. I wish more powerful people would act like the shallowest high school characters in movies.
Mike Jeffries continues to shatter stereotypes of gay men with his incredibly poor taste. If you watched Behind the Candelabra this weekend (I was watching Arrested Development: Season 4, so no spoilers!), have ever seen Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, or have lived in the world, you know that gay men have a notorious flare for fashion. Not Mike Jeffries, whose company sells the most generic items of clothing known to man. How refreshing to find a gay man who literally runs from good taste. Now you don’t have to be a character on Happy Endings to show that not everyone is the same.
Lastly, and most importantly, Mike Jeffries is breaking down the cruelest stricture of society’s expectations: the natural alliance between gay men and zaftig women (see Lauren Manzo and friend Greg on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Ricky Lake and John Waters, me and every male friend I had in high school). Thank God Mike Jeffries has the courage to look at this alliance with total disdain. We all know that chunky girls get enough positive reinforcement without the comfort that some glorious gay friend is going to find her funny and great regardless of her BMI. What do we want, for heavy young ladies to enjoy high self-esteem? Then where would we be? That’s a world that I, and thankfully, Mike Jeffries never want to see.