So there’s been a bit of an uproar this week about a new clothing store in India named Hitler. Rightfully. But what of the styles for sale?
As Gawker and many, many others gleefully report:
As for the name, [co-owner Rajesh] Shah … pleads ignorance, telling the Times of India the store was named after his business partner's grandfather who was nicknamed Hitler "because of his strict nature."
He continued: "Frankly, till the time we applied for the trademark permission, I had only heard that Hitler was a strict man. It was only recently that we read about Hitler on the internet."
I feel pretty comfortable calling bullshit on the "I didn't know who Hitler was" claim, which dovetails nicely with a viral ad campaign based on international outrage, yet I can't help but feel like everyone's burying the lede here, and that lede is Jesus Christ, What Kind Of Clothes Are They Selling In India.
Really, give these pictures a close look. What the fuck is that Ed Hardy-inspired Gandhi T-shirt that Mr. Shah is wearing? And what's with all those Hawaiian-looking numbers hanging like rags behind him on the left? A Superman T-shirt, like some remaindered crap from Urban Outfitters? And a blue-checked, button-down thing that I swear my mom bought me from Aéropostale in 1999?
Let us stress that this Ahmedabad-based outlet is situated in "the posh neighborhood of Vastrapur." Now please take a second to atone for your role in the globalization of consumer capitalism. We can only hope that despite all the free publicity for his ill-named store, Mr. Shah fails on his repugnant aesthetic alone. On the other hand, you can't fault his vision: this is definitely what we'd all dress like if the Nazis had won.