It’s been more than three weeks since Kanye West turned up at Paris Fashion Week and all hell broke loose. He opened the Balenciaga show at PFW, he put “White Lives Matter” sweatshirts in his Yeezy line, he verbally attacked Vogue editor Gabriella Karefa Johnson, he harassed every person who stood up for Karefa Johnson, and then he flew back to the US and immediately sat down with Tucker Carlson on Fox News. The Fox News interview was incredibly offensive, and Fox News producers took pains to edit out all of the antisemitic sh-t he said on-camera. No worries – since that interview, Kanye went full-on antisemite, to the point where he’s lost all of his jobs, all of his fashion collabs, all of his colleagues. Anna Wintour cut him off. Balenciaga cut him off. Adidas canceled his line. CAA dropped him. He was set to make some kind of documentary and that’s canceled too. What’s interesting is that once Kanye’s corporate partners make the decision to cut him off, they’re not mincing words whatsoever. From Adidas’s statement:
adidas does not tolerate antisemitism and any other sort of hate speech. Ye’s recent comments and actions have been unacceptable, hateful and dangerous, and they violate the company’s values of diversity and inclusion, mutual respect and fairness.
After a thorough review, the company has taken the decision to terminate the partnership with Ye immediately, end production of Yeezy branded products and stop all payments to Ye and his companies. adidas will stop the adidas Yeezy business with immediate effect.
It’s terse, and it needs to be terse. It needs to be a solid boundary of “you can’t do this” and “this is unacceptable.” Before now, Kanye had legitimately gotten mixed signals. He was doing and saying whatever he wanted and he still had support from Adidas, Vogue, the fashion industry. Not anymore. Oh, and Gap also came out and said that they’re not selling anything related to Kanye:
Gap is removing all Yeezy product from stores following Kanye West’s recent antisemitic remarks, the brand announced in a statement on Tuesday.
“In September, Gap announced ending its Yeezy Gap partnership,” the statement began. “Our former partner’s recent remarks and behavior further underscore why. We are taking immediate steps to remove Yeezy Gap product from our stores and we have shut down Yeezygap.com.”
The iconic American clothing brand’s statement continued: ” Antisemitism, racism and hate in any form are inexcusable and not tolerated in accordance with our values. On behalf of our customers, employees and shareholders, we are partnering with organizations that combat hate and discrimination.”
Good. As Forbes pointed out, while the Adidas/Yeezy line brought in significant revenue for Adidas (a reported 4-8% of their sales), the Adidas deal was a huge chunk of Ye’s net worth. It accounted for $1.5 billion of his worth on paper. That’s now gone. And he doesn’t have anything to fall back on either – no Gap collabs, no Balenciaga collabs, no documentaries, no CAA. It’s entirely his own doing too.
Photos courtesy of Backgrid.