Images via Diesel

Last month, Italian fashion retailer Diesel launched its contentious ‘Hate Couture’ collection. The Fall/Winter 2018 series—modeled by stars like Nicki Minaj, Gucci Mane, Bella Thorne, and more—aims to dilute the negative power of hateful terms by letting wearers “embrace” them.

Although the apparels are deliberately offensive, some believe the brand might have gotten too far with an outerwear found on its UK site that emblazons a homophobic term.

The satin bomber jacket, priced at £350 (US$455), is printed with the slur, “f****t,” on its front pocket, as well as all over its back.

Diesel has since been criticized by social media users for possibly capitalizing on homophobia.

“Is Diesel drunk?” asked PR expert and LGBT activist Nick Horbowj on Twitter. “I’m no snowflake but this is horrendous.”

Twitter user ‘da_stone’ commented, “I get the message you’re trying to convey, but as a gay and a long time customer of Diesel, I’m appalled at this!”

Responding to the controversy, the brand emphasized to social issues-focused platform Mic that the campaign was launched “to disempower those that create the hate and manifest negativity.”

It added that ambassadors had each chosen a phrase that “they wanted to wear proudly.” 13 Reasons Why actor Tommy Dorfman, for instance, selected this particular jacket due to the homophobic comments he often receives on social media.

“Together, Diesel and Tommy Dorfman use this as a platform to disempower the haters and show the more hate you wear, the less you care.”

View this post on Instagram

Happy to say that @diesel and @onlythebrave_foundation are donating all profits from the limited edition “faggot” jacket to @aliforneycenter in support of LGBTQ youth. The more hate you wear, the less you care. #dieselhatecouture #ad

A post shared by tommy dorfman (@tommy.dorfman) on Oct 4, 2018 at 8:57am PDT

Is @DIESEL drunk? I'm no snowflake but this is horrendous.

— NickHorbowyj (@NickHorbowyj) November 7, 2018

I feel weird that Diesel will be selling this jacket for ~$700. Their “hate couture” message is def bold, but I find this specific jacket less empowering and more … a way for Diesel to turn a profit using queer pain. 🤷🏻‍♂️

— Phil Stamper 🚀🏳️‍🌈 (@stampepk) September 21, 2018

Their other messages: slut, weirdo, the bad guy… I get. But I don’t think Diesel gets to “reclaim” this term for our community. It’s still pretty divisive, and brings up a lot of trauma for queer people. (Sorry, provably should have started with a TW.)

— Phil Stamper 🚀🏳️‍🌈 (@stampepk) September 21, 2018

Please tell me this is a joke. I get the message you’re trying to convey but as a gay and a long time customer of Diesel, I’m appalled at this! @DIESEL

— D@vey (@da_stone) November 7, 2018

The irony is this is inspired by their campaign of showcasing personalities that recieve hate. But reappropiating those slurs on the actual clothing is taking compelling risk art too far and gonna backfire

— Mr. Lane. (@prophecypro) November 7, 2018

[via Yahoo News, images via Diesel]

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