Adidas hit with anti-trans backlash over Pride swimsuit
Transphobes are once again in arms over a minor moment of trans-inclusion – this time it is Adidas’s Pride collection that has drawn the attention of their ire.
The Let Love Be Your Legacy collection for Pride 2023 has been produced in collaboration between the athletic apparel brand and South African, queer designer Rich Mnisi and went on sale Monday (15 May).
The Adidas x RICH MNISI range of clothes and footwear includes colourful offerings for both lifestyle and performance, across Adidas Originals, football, cycling, sportswear and swimwear.
One item, in particular, has outraged anti-trans bigots who have accused the global sports brand of “erasing women” and “gaslighting”.
The Pride Swimsuit, marketed for $70, is modelled by what appears to be a male model – although their gender identity is unknown – which has set Twitter transphobes ablaze with rage.
However, most anti-trans activists fail to note the exact same swimsuit is also worn by another model on the brand’s website in the plus size section, who appears to be female.
Anti-trans poster boy, and former ‘trans-racial’ serial-tweeter Oli London and former Team GB Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies, who has campaigned against trans inclusion in sport, were quick to jump on the topic.
Davies used the hashtag #AdidasHatesWomen and said trans inclusion is “moving towards an absolute assault on being female” and “what that means to women”.
Other Twitter users said the brand had gone “woke” so should go “broke”.
A trend of anti-trans boycott
The backlash from gender critical activists comes amid a wave of boycotts and negative reaction to companies including trans people in their marketing.
In April, trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney partnered with Nike, where she wore Nike Women’s leggings and a sports bra in just one paid partnership Instagram post.
Both the TikToker and brand faced vile backlash for the collaboration, with Davies describing Mulvaney’s partnership as a “kick in the teeth” in a GB News interview.
Nike, however, doubled down in the face of the fallout and backed the LGBTQ+ community.
Just days later, Mulvaney was once again at the centre of an anti-trans storm, over her collaboration with Bud Light.
Reactions to the beer brand giving the social media star one single can with her face on it were extreme, to say the least.
One man was arrested after destroying a shelf of beer in a Kansas Walmart store, singer Kid Rock filming himself shooting Bud Light cans and country star Brantley Gilbert smashed a can live on stage.
More recently, Starbuck’s India faced bitter reaction from bigots after an advertisement featured parents meeting with their trans child in a Starbucks coffee house.
Upon the release of the Pride collection Rich Mnisi said the designs were inspired by a love letter he wrote to his younger self.
Mnisi said: “In creating this collection, I had a strong impulse to speak to my inner-child and express to the world how LGBTQIA+ allyship can create a legacy of love.
“Unifying these themes together through my own visual language and adidas’ iconic performance and lifestyle pieces is a powerful combination – making the collection a symbol for self-acceptance and LGBTQIA+ advocacy.
“My hope is this range inspires LGBTQIA+ allies to speak up more for the queer people they love and not let them fight for acceptance alone”.
PinkNews has contacted Adidas for comment.
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