As America continues its democratic backslide, it's easy to get worked up about evil people abusing power and a general population that's too ignorant to recognize the warning signs due to failing schools. But it's Thanksgiving week! It's time to be thankful and reflect.
I'm thankful that we no longer have to deal with state-sponsored rationing like back in the good old days of multiple World Wars. We got a glimpse of it during Covid with TP hoarding, but nothing compares to the late 1910s and early-mid 1940s rations. Those days weren't easy and sure as heck weren't perfect (Jim Crow, single women not being allowed to open a bank account, legislated homophobia, etc.), but one relic of the 20th century that's missed today is Americans rallying together for the greater good. Could you imagine trying to institute a meatless Monday today? People who can't define communism would be screaming communism faster than you could say, Red Rover.
During both World Wars, Americans rationed food and materials to support the war efforts. While WWI rations were "voluntary" in the way that voluntary mini-camps are "voluntary" in the NFL, during WWII, national rations were officially set after the Emergency Price Control Act (1942). The EPCA gave Americans clear restrictions and required the use of official coupons to purchase things like sugar and dairy products.
But it wasn't only food getting rationed. There were restrictions with materials like rubber, nylon, and wool too. This (and general racism) led to the "Zoot Suit Riots" in 1943. If you're unfamiliar with 1930s & 40s fashion, Zoot Suits were baggy suits with exaggerated lapels that looked like what you'd see at the 2003 NBA Draft
Jazz singers like Cab Callaway made zoot suits famous; he's credited with calling them "totally and truly American."
During WWII, zoot suits were considered wasteful of valuable materials and often caused "issues" between the people wearing them and those who were offended by their very existence, seeing them as unpatriotic.
America still has miles to go socially, but that doesn't mean it's not okay to take a second to reflect where we currently stand. Let's not even touch how the sweater is pink because the idea of colors being tied to gender identity is outdated, but I mean that doesn't change that 80 years ago you could've gotten killed for wearing a pink sweater, even at a normal size. Be thankful that (for now) there are no legal restrictions on how much material you use. Look at how much we've advanced as a society when a mixed-race man feels confident enough to wear this to work without fearing for his life! yayyyy bare minimums!
Kyle Kuzma is 6' 10" with a 7-foot wingspan which conservatively means we're looking at an 11 XL sweater with two (2) four and a half foot sleeves. Eighty years ago, this man would've gotten beaten for supporting fascism by wearing intentionally big clothes. Now it's considered fashion with a side of obviously looking for attention, which I'll gladly give because this sweater is fucking hilarious. This type of excess and apathy towards practicality is what being an American is all about! He might as well be baking an apple pie and cheating on his taxes. Rock, flag and Eagle!
Everybody and their mother referenced the easy Lenny Kravitz comparison, and since I too know of his rug-scarf, I have to refer to it, too.
Here's a photo I posted on my personal IG (lucky you!) back in 2018 of me rockin' a ridiculous scarf that a member of my family wore to the beach. THE BEACH!
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