As a privately held company, Modern Evil is not required to publicly report on any of its operations or activities. This blog is a faint reflection of our interests and opinions. Thank you.

~ Dr. Archibald T. Staph, Ph.D, President


Do These Sneakers Make Me Look Neo-Nazi?

CATEGORY: Fashion, Neo-Nazi, Culture Code

DIVISION: Modern Evil

COMMENT: If clothes make the man then what are you made of? Sending signals is why we dress the way we do, so Neo-Nazis have cottoned onto the original approach of looking very chic while telegraphing their ethos. Sure this is nothing new, but we welcome the appropriation of fashion brands for nefarious purposes. Ralph Lauren could easily become the darling drapery of suicide bombers, while Taliban everywhere would be better suited in Prada.

Thor Steinar and the Changing Look of the German Far Right

By Rachel Nolan in Berlin

Shaved heads, bomber jackets, black boots with white shoelaces -- it used to be easy to spot a neo-Nazi. But young far-right extremists are wearing more stylish and more coded clothes.

Lilian Engelmann never thought she would see neo-Nazis on her block. The young art curator works in a gallery in the trendy district of Mitte, a neighborhood in central Berlin. Her neighbors include an international cinema, designer hat store, Vietnamese restaurant and -- as of last February -- a store called Tönsberg, which sells clothing popular among right-wing extremists.

"By coming here, the neo-Nazis tried to come into the center of society," Engelmann told SPIEGEL ONLINE. Once local residents and shopowners learned that Tönsberg planned to sell the clothing brand Thor Steinar, they organized against the store. The group led by Engelmann and other shopowners called itself the "Mitte Initiative Against the Far Right," and mounted regular protests.

Neo-Nazis are a fringe group in Germany, where Holocaust denial, praise of Adolf Hitler and the display of Nazi symbols are all illegal. The Office for the Protection of the Constitution, the government's domestic intelligence agency, estimates there are about 40,000 active members of the German far right. The agency can shut down Kameradschaften, gangs or brotherhoods which tend to be violent, but many other groups in the neo-Nazi scene often fly under the legal radar -- like rock bands with suggestive lyrics or stylish clothing companies with coded symbols. As long as they don't display swastikas or explicitly support Hitler or his party, these groups are left alone.

Do These Sneakers Make Me Look Neo-Nazi?

Thor Steinar goods were banned in 2004 because of the logo's similarity to symbols worn by SS officers. But the company has rebranded, and its new look is legal. This presents a dilemma for Engelmann's group. Symbols and speech not obviously related to Nazism are protected by German law. So instead of trying to run the store out, her group decided to educate passersby about Tönsberg.

>> Full Article Here

No comments: