Fred Perry Wants Alt-Right Bros to Stop Wearing Their Polos - 2017-07-11
Fred Perry's classic laurel wreath polo is instantly recognizable—a staple of men's closets since the brand debuted in 1952. Though they were regularly sported by the likes of JFK, they also have a history of being co-opted by the darker side of skinhead culture, particularly the sect of skinheads who aligned themselves with the far-right extremist group called the British National Front in the 1970s. Since then, Fred Perry has worked hard to escape this image by recruiting brand partners such as tennis star Andy Murray and the late great singer Amy Winehouse. But in the era of Trump, with a bolstered far-right movement, a new chauvinistic group called the Proud Boys—which is basically a fraternity of white guys who like to punch each other and harass peaceful protestors—has adopted the Fred Perry polo as a part of its unofficial uniform, much to the chagrin of the label.
In a statement, Fred Perry chairman John Flynn said:
Frankly I could send you a press release but no need. A little investigation into Fred the man and Fred Perry the company would reveal a lot.