Why Geraldo and the 1% don’t need hoodies…

Five Reasons The 99% Wear Hoodies
(and Geraldo Rivera and The 1% Don’t)

A man wears a hoodie at an Occupy The Hamptons GA

1. Hoodies cover a person’s head, and thus are an efficient way to stay warm. (I wonder how many mothers are angry at Geraldo Rivera for contradicting years of nagging to “Put your hood up!”?)

Rich people do not need to wear hoodies. The 1% can easily keep warm by turning the heat up in their homes, or wearing fur coats or lots of layers. S0, rich people do not need to own simple, frugal methods of staying warm.

2. Hoodies are a convenient way to put a hat on or off when one must go inside and outside frequently. So, hoodies are good for people who labor and do real work, such as construction jobs, deliveries, etc.

Rich people mostly work inside. And, they can often afford door-to-door service, instead of long walks through parking lots or city streets.

3. Hoodies work well on public transportation. Wait on the train platform, hood up: Go inside the hot train with not enough ventilation, hood down.

Rich people have their own cars, with lots of room for hats and other fashion accessories. The 1% do not frequent buses and subways.

4. Hoodies are hats that do not need to be hung in a closet or on a hook.

Rich people always have a place to hang their hat. The very upper echelons sometimes have a person assigned to hold their hat and coat. The 1% are usually offered something to drink, a couch, and a cloakroom when they are asked to wait somewhere.

5. Hoodies with campaign messages and/or art are sold by progressive organizations and do-it-yourself websites. Hoodies (and t-shirts) are a convenient way to create wearable fashion statements at an inexpensive price point.

Geraldo Rivera  and the 1% can simply buy designer clothes, say it with diamonds, or convey their political desires with campaign donations (bribes) to politicians.

My point:

It is not a coincidence that Geraldo Rivera identifies hoodies with youth of color. Rivera seemed to think the hoodie is some abstract fashion choice, unrelated to the realities of our racist, classist society. Of course people who tend to be offered less respect, less education, and less pay are more likely to wear clothes that protect them from the weather and work well for laboring. It is as if Geraldo suddenly decried women who wore pants instead of skirts.

Chiming in on the issue of hoodies probably didn’t seem like such a big deal to Geraldo Rivera. With his current level of prosperity and success, he doesn’t mind stigmatizing a certain kind of garment. Geraldo Rivera will be safe no matter what he wears. And, if he vilifies the hoodie, he can just go out and buy a bunch of some other kind of garment to stay warm.

For those of us in the 99%, if we have to get rid of a couple of hoodies from our closet, it will be a burden on our weekly budget to go out and replace those items. And, it will be an even bigger burden on a poor mother, with growing children, who all need clothes to keep warm.

The 1% have already harmed young people of color by painting whole cities with lead paint, causing illness, death and/or learning disabilities. And, the 1% have poisoned the poor and working class with a corporate controlled government that allows companies to sell chemicals as food, and publish brainwashing advertising to our children to encourage them to eat those chemicals. Do we also have to endanger our youth by intimidating them from dressing properly for the weather?

Of course, there is also the point that no one deserves to die because some other person stereotyped him based on what he was wearing. And, we, as a society, should not neglect justice, or limit our mourning, because of how a victim was dressed.

Ian Wilder wears a Green Party hoodie, designed by a local Green, to "Occupy Black Friday 2011"


This list written by Kimberly Wilder, an Occupy Wall Street activist from Long Island, New York, where a recent turn in the weather will require us to get our hoodies out. As an early childhood educator, she is adamant that you (yes, you) remember to cover your head! RIP Trayvon Martin.

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Related Post:

Story on some history and implications of hoodies
at CNN:here.

7 Responses

  1. A photo of Rivera AND Bill O’Reilly wearing hoodies at a sporting event a few years back was shown on Countdown with Keith Olbermann last week. Oooops! So add another layer of hypocrisy on Mr. Al-Capone’s-Vault!

  2. […] Why Geraldo and the 1% don’t need hoodies… (onthewilderside.com) […]

  3. Great post. I bet Geraldo regrets ever saying that comment! He has gotten nothing but grief since then–and likely so.

    • Thanks, John. Yes, your article covered lots of aspects to think about in the Trayvon Martin case. Interesting!

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