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Column: What to wear in the face of fascism

There’s been a lot of talk about fighting fascism on my Facebook feed lately, but are you really prepared to resist an Orwellian police state? And when I say prepared, I mean do you have the right outfit?

Of course not! The 2000s were a fashion nightmare from which we are only just awaking, which is why I’m here to tell you what looks will be hot in the picket line this fall.

Women’s March

The Women’s March on Washington has already passed, but with changes to insurance coverage for birth control looming and a soon-to-be Supreme Court justice in favor of repealing Roe v. Wade, there’s sure to be another.

Now we all know the key takeaway from the march wasn’t that women will resist the erosion of their civil liberties, but that women are finally capable of agreeing on a fashion statement — I’m talking about those cute pink hats. Sure, it was a great way to send a big middle finger to a president who thinks grabbing women is his prerogative, but it was also a fashion catastrophe.

Next time you want to fight for gender and racial justice, consider doing it in a newsboy cap (you can get a brown newsboy cap from Concept for only $78), because as Vogue tells us, they’re back! And nothing says resistance like an Ivanka Trump harper leather satchel in black (only $189.95). Cute handbags and brown caps are the best way to forget that paying for an IUD is about to become a lot more difficult for low-income women.

Isn’t your attention better spent searching Nordstrom for Ivanka’s handbags than worrying about the number of Syrian refugees allowed into the U.S. (Trump’s travel ban lowers the maximum number allowed in 2017 from 110,000 to 50,000)? That’s certainly where President Trump’s priorities are, so why shouldn’t ours be there too?

Airport Protest

Speaking of the travel ban, let’s talk about those airport protests after President Trump tried to discriminate against people based on their religious beliefs, because no fashion moment is more important than when you’re defending constitutional rights.

I think these are protests where you should rock a retro look, since discriminating against people and denying aid to refugees is such an old school move (check out the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 or the Japanese internment camps of the 1940s).

I know parts of the ban have been suspended while its constitutionality gets debated in court, but with Trump promising to write more executive orders, there’s no doubt more opportunities to protest discrimination will arise.

Try a dress with puffed sleeves and a belted waist, staples of 1930s women’s fashion (the same decade in which the U.S. denied entry to Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi persecution). You can get a ‘30s style black vintage floral print dress ($138.00) while you contemplate the MS St. Louis (an ocean liner that carried 900 Jewish refugees and was turned away from U.S. shores in 1939).

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Of course, with Trump’s relationship to the truth (as in he doesn’t understand the need to differentiate between fact and fiction and happily lies to the press, the American people and himself) and his relationship to Steve Bannon (as in the guy who used to run the alt right site Breitbart where he got to say racist, xenophobic bullshit and now sits on the National Security Council where he presumably still gets to say racist, xenophobic bullshit) we may soon be living in an Orwellian dystopia.

If that happens, you could resist, or you could buy some blue Loretta overalls ($199.99).

Of course, not even Winston looked good in the blue overalls. After all, what’s really important? Birth control access, religious freedom and giving aid to refugees, or looking cute in the face of fascism? Let’s try doing both. The alternative is a gradual erosion of civil liberties and a lifetime of blue overalls. So for the sake of freedom and fashion — resist, resist, resist!

Cathy Cook is a news reporter at the Daily Lobo. She can be reached at or on Twitter @Cathy_Daily. The views expressed in this column are her own.

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