Veteran fashion designer Donna Karan cannot seem to figure out how to simply say “I am sorry” for claiming that the victims of Harvey Weinstein’s sexual assault and harassment might have been “asking for it” because of the way they dressed. First, Karan, who founded her New York-based brand in 1984 (and was sold by LVMH to G-III Apparel Group in July 2016), released a statement days after her outrageous comments claiming she was taken out of context during a red carpet interview. Now she is blaming the media.
In an interview with Women’s Wear Daily this week, Karan said: “I was confused by the question. I mean, I hadn’t been paying attention to any of the news, and you hear little stories here and a little story there. And quite honestly, it wasn’t my place to say anything. Sometimes the press can kind of gear you on, and I didn’t feel it was appropriate.”
Really? She was the one trying to provide cover for her perverted, powerful predator of a friend. And let's be frank, it is absolutely is a reporter’s place to ask friends of Weinstein’s what they think of the allegations. This was not ambush reporting.
One of Weinstein’s most vocal victims, Rose McGowan, called Karan “scum in a fancy dress,” and there is a small but growing group of women on Twitter calling for women to boycott the brand. One poster wrote, “Women are not asking to be raped based on their clothing. #boycottdonnakaran I wore khakis w/long sleeve shirt when attacked by a stranger.”
Karan suggested these eight women reportedly assaulted by Weinstein had it coming. She said, “I also think how do we display ourselves? How do we present ourselves as women? What are we asking? Are we asking for it by presenting all the sensuality and all the sexuality? … You look at everything all over the world today and how women are dressing and what they are asking by just presenting themselves the way they do. What are they asking for? Trouble.”
Besides blaming the media for taking her out of context, she also got amnesia. “I said, ‘I said that? ... What? I didn’t say that. That’s ridiculous,” she stated.
Instead of profusely apologizing for her hurtful comments, Karan cannot seem to own her poor judgment and tasteless remarks regarding these victims.
Jaclyn Cashman is co-host of Herald Radio’s “Morning Meeting” show.