2 Schools of Thought Emerge Over First Lady's Jacket

Either she's calculating or she's 'clueless'
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 22, 2018 9:51 AM CDT
First lady Melania Trump walks to her vehicle as she arrives at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Thursday, June 21, 2018.   (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
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(Newser) – The first lady made headlines by visiting immigrant facilities at the border, then much bigger headlines by wearing a jacket with the message "I REALLY DON'T CARE, DO U?" scrawled on the back. Her own rep said there was "no hidden message," but then her husband said it was a message directed at the "dishonest" media. So what gives? At the New York Times, Vanessa Friedman finds it impossible to believe that Melania Trump wasn't fully aware of the sensation her message would create—and that the fashion-conscious first lady would wear an inexpensive, mass-market coat accidentally. But if that's the case, who was the message directed at? Well, that's the trickier part. Related coverage:

  • Deliberate: Sure, maybe it was for the media, or perhaps for the president himself, writes Friedman. "Or maybe, just maybe, it was a message for those of us who like to read messages into her clothes. One that said, 'I’m going to wear whatever I want and I don’t care what you think about it.'" The first lady "seems to be using her clothes as a sort of private diary, yet one that is parsed by millions who don’t have the rest of the text." That's a "risky approach to her role."

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