John Galliano, the former Christian Dior fashion head who was fired after making anti-Semitic slurs in a Paris cafe, dressed as a Chasidic Jew at New York Fashion Week.
Galliano, who was praised recently by the Anti-Defamation League for his efforts at rehabilitation, wore a long black coat, black top hat and high socks at the ODLR fashion show on Tuesday. He also wore his hair down to form side locks.
Some Jewish figures, including Brooklyn Assemblyman Dov Hikind, found the outfit offensive. Hikind told the New York Post that the outfit appeared to be mocking the Jewish community.
“Who is he mocking?” Hikind said. “The way the socks look, the jacket, the peyos … My question is, who’s he laughing at?”
But Abraham Foxman, the ADL’s national director, did not see the outfit as being offensive or even resembling a Chasidic Jew.
“This is a deliberate distortion of his outfit. No Chasid wears a scarf or fedora, and Galliano has long hair,” Foxman told JTA. “He’s not trying to make any statement, and after he reached out to the Jewish community to turn over a new leaf, I find it very sad that this is the way they treat him.”
Rabbi and fashion designer Tobi Rubinstein Schneier told the New York Post that Galliano screwed up bigtime.
“This was not very smart, unless he really wants attention. I’m hoping that this is not in any way a mockery through this attire.”
Williamsburg community leader Isaac Abraham fumed to the paper about the get-up.
“He’s trying to embarrass people in the Jewish community and make money on clothes [while] dressed like people he has insulted,” Abraham said. “It looks like the hairstyle he added was done purposely to insult.”