Updated: Jun 30, 2020
Calvin Klein has gone woke – maybe, but their new step towards progression involves a transgender model Jari Jones in their #PROUDINMYCALVINS 2020 pride campaign.
In 2019, Calvin Klein's pride campaign was represented by Indya Moore, however this year campaign shows the largest cast of LGBT diversity including Brazilian drag queen @pabllovittar, trans genderqueer YouTube personality @chellaman, queer pop artist @GiaWoods, and gay actor, @Tommy.Dorfman.
Jari made the announcement on her IG on #Juneteenth and posted an emotional message saying, “ here are moments that I heard about, that help you forget when the world told you “Never” !!! There are these moments I heard about about that help you heal when the society has tried to beat you down, over and over again. There are these very real moments that I heard about that help you feel affirmed even when you don’t see yourself. I’ve been searching my whole life for those moments, I got tired of looking for those moments. So I decided to create them. Not for me but for the next dreamer, outcast, queer, trans, disabled, fat, beautiful black, piece of starlight waiting for their moment to shine. It has been such an honor and pleasure to sit in my most authentic self and present imagery of a body that far to often has been demonized, harassed , made to feel ugly and unworthy and even killed. I present this image ,myself and all that my body stands for to my community and chosen family, in hope that they see themselves more clearly than ever and further realize that they are worthy of celebration , of compassion , of love and gratitude. - Thank you to @ryanmcginleystudios and the @calvinklein family for a collaboration that will hopefully be a symbol of hope and love during these moments. BLACK TRANS LIVES MATTER!!
Although this moment is one to celebrate there were of course haters. Jari posted a collage of naysayers who criticized Calvin Klein's decision to feature a curvy, trans, black model. Jari was referred to as "Shaniqua" and others posted comments such as "That's a Man Baby", "It's utterly disgusting, hopefully, it's going to fade." "Lol gross.", "Big Papa is not dead.", " Lol, enabling this mental illness. You so crazy Calvin."
Despite this, Jari took this criticism in a classy way saying, "It comes with the territory I guess. It comes with showing the world that Black folks, that Trans folks , that Fat folks can be celebrated and loved and empowered publicly."
With protests and demands of representation and fairness being demanded from all walks of life we see major industries beginning to turn a new, browner leaf. This could be a fad, or this could be the start of something new. What do ya’ll think, gayes? Regardless, let’s give a huge shout out to our girl Jari Jones for representing #TransLives and #BlackLives unapologetically.