In Defense of Dwyane Wade's Man Capris
Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade is no stranger to fashion provocation, but gauging by the reaction from his stroll into Chicago's United Center last night in a tailored Gucci suit that featured ankle-flashing capri pants, you would have assumed he'd shown up in a rainbow Speedo and glittery suspenders. From Shaq's on-air a cappella version of "Karma Chameleon" to online commenters lamenting the "feminization" of NBA player, the online reaction was swift and heaping with complaints about boring things like the state of masculinity.
Personally, I'm not so much a fan of the man capri look, but, to paraphrase Evelyn Beatrice Hall, I may not agree with your look, but I defend to the death your right to wear it.
The ever-escalating NBA fashion wars are nothing new. The player arrivals and post-game press conference during the playoffs have practically become an unofficial celebrated event on the men's fashion calendar. We've seen everything from man purses to pink ensembles. It's pretty standard now, and yet every time a prominent player wears something a little "fashion forward" there's an online and televised uproar.
Look at the way TNT's Inside the NBA crew reacted to Dwayne's get-up last night.
Shaquille O'Neil straight up starts singing Culture Club's "Karma Chameleon," because, I guess, the singer, Boy George, is an openly gay man whose fashion choices over the years have ranged from "club kid androgynous" to nearing full-out drag queen (looks that really don't encompass Wade's fashion sense). The website Yazmar claimed Wade was wearing women's capris (they're not, they're straight off the men's Gucci runway) and lamented it was "a sign of more effeminate things to come from the NBA and so called MEN of today." Twitter response included lines like, "The Miami Heat are a gay basketball team!!"