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June 18, 2012

Best Dressed for Unrest: NYPD’s Disarming Summer Fashion Statement

Polo Shirt NYPD cop

I’ve got to tell you, what caught my eye more than anything from the coverage of the “stop-and-frisk” demo in New York on Sunday was the NYPD’s latest fashion statement (or, apparel strategy).  I mean, with all those eyes on you now, what’s a civil defense servant to wear these days?

Examining the photo, of course there is the irony here of the protester not consenting to the “snatch-and-grab.” It’s the “casual Friday” approach to the NYPD’s hardline protest suppression that’s really clever here, though. The white shirts have ‘em and the blue shirts have ‘em. Add the big brimmed b-ball style cap and it’s like you’re getting arrested now by your next-door-neighbor, or the average Joe sitting next to you at the Mets game, or the friendly guy down at the union hall. Decked out for summer, and summer civil unrest, I actually think the shirt works. Mr. Polo Cop here really does seem to be less intimidating and aggressive in his informal dress than the traditional looking copy in the foreground — at the same time, he’s obviously the guy with the meanest grip.

(photo: Eric Thayer/Reuters caption: A woman is taken into custody by the police following a protest in New York June 17, 2012. Thousands of New Yorkers marched in silence down Fifth Avenue on Sunday to demand an end to the New York Police Department’s “stop-and-frisk” program, which the protesters say disproportionately targets black and Latino males.)

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  • Ralph

    What an amazing piece of performance art. 

    What an amazing piece of performance art.  Personally, I would have chosen a shirt for the march hoping that it would not attract the attention of four cops.

    I’m more impressed by the woman’s apparel strategy.

  • Stephaniekeith
    funny, I got almost the same shot, as photographers do sometimes

  • George Mokray

    Seen that “I do not consent to this search” on netbooks at places like the Berkman Center.

  • nina

    The woman is Christina Gonzalez and she has been repeatedly targeted, harassed and arrested by the NYPD because of her activist work against Stop and Frisk. 

  • psychohistorian

    Look at the hand in the lower left corner.  It is carefully pressing on the badge of the officer so that is seen in the picture.

    If this shot is used in some court case does the photographer get a cut?

    Blessed is Christina Gonzalez, who this reportedly is, for continuing to speak truth to power in our thankless world.

  • Matthewswaye

    I’m so sick of “which protestors say disperportionately…”
    It’s not us saying it, it’s math saying it. There is data and it is clear, this is empirical, knowable. IRS not an accusation we’re making. We’re trying to educate.

    Watch “outside while black” on YouTube

    • Matthewswaye

      It’s … Not IRS, damn iPhone

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