Hypocrisy on display
Culture | A shop owner goes viral for calling out popular celebrities
by Sharon Dierberger
Posted 12/08/20, 06:05 pm
Most holiday window displays feature Santa, snowmen, or nutcrackers. But at an upscale boutique in Los Angeles, window shoppers instead saw a poster of actress Alyssa Milano in a Santa hat wearing a shirt with the slogan, “Defund the Police.” Emblazoned above Milano’s picture were the words, “David call 911 there is a squirrel in our backyard!” A stuffed squirrel sat below.
The actress vocally supported the “defund the police” movement, but many on social media accused her of hypocrisy after her husband called police in September to follow up on a neighbor’s report of an alleged gunman near their home. The gunman turned out to be a squirrel hunter.
Two weeks ago, Kitson, a trendy pop-culture store appealing to celebrities, started displaying posters on its expansive glass storefront lampooning prominent Democrats. The “Hypocrites of 2020” posters have gone viral globally and boosted sales by 2,000 percent, owner Fraser Ross said. In addition to Milano, the original displays featured House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, and actress Chrissy Teigen.
Ross is a Canadian citizen and said he’s not interested in promoting any political party. He just can’t stand hypocrisy—or the mainstream media’s failure to point it out. He has created year-end window display statements before but said he never received this kind of attention. He said even the Hollywood crowd has given him kudos, and he may have to pause online sales for lack of merchandise.
“The support is insane,” Ross told me. “And hundreds are coming to take pictures of the windows every day.”
Teigen gave him the idea for this year’s window statements, Ross said. During riots in Los Angeles following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, looters raided his store on May 30. He became incensed when Teigen tweeted (in a tweet since removed) that she would pay $100,000 to help get rioters and looters out of jail. She then raised it to $200,000.
“Here she is living in her gated house. … I don’t understand how she thinks looting and rioting are OK,” Ross said.
His display also makes fun of Teigen for an Instagram video of her cooking with a nearby can of Goya peas shortly after she called for a boycott of the company. Its CEO had expressed support for President Donald Trump.
Newsom made the hypocrisy naughty list for his maskless attendance of a birthday party at the upscale restaurant The French Laundry. The gathering broke his own strict COVID-19 health restrictions. Kitson’s The French Laundry Cookbook has been selling like hotcakes—or maybe crepes, Ross said. And he slammed Pelosi for a photo of her at a salon without a mask after other hairdressers were forced to close. Ross said the owner of the salon Pelosi visited messaged him to thank him for the poster.
Last week, Ross put up a new display, dubbed “People of the Year.” Among the targets: Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Dr. Anthony Fauci, and Hunter Biden, who appears with glazed eyes and a cigarette hanging from his lips, saying, “Where is my laptop, my China deal is on it. Don’t forget 10% for the big guy!”
Ross said he chose Biden for the window rather than Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., after consulting a focus group. The display references accusations that Biden earned millions from foreign countries due to the political ties of his father, President-elect Joe Biden.
So, what’s next? Ross said he is considering a New Year’s resolutions display focused on recalling Newsom.
Read more Muse Sign up for the Muse email
Sharon is a correspondent and reviewer for WORLD. She is a World Journalism Institute and Northwestern University graduate. She has served as a university teacher, clinical exercise physiologist, homeschooling mom, businesswoman, and Division 1 athlete. She resides in Stillwater, Minnesota, with her husband, Bill.