• kathleenemurphy26

The Devil Is in the Details

By Kathleen Murphy

This is Breakthrough Ideas Lighting Up the Media.

The devil wears Prada - and now, apparently, sneakers.

On Palm Sunday, a pair of shoes from rapper Lil Nas X put sneakers at the center of the culture wars once again.

ABC News described the shoes, saying: Lil Nas X is collaborating with the streetwear company Mischief on a pair of "Satan Shoes," only 666 pairs of which went on sale...

The controversial kicks — apparently modified Nike Air Max 97s — are decorated with a pentagram pendant and a reference to Luke ten:eighteen, a Bible verse about Satan's fall from heaven.

They were sold out shortly after going on sale, at a price of one-thousand eighteen dollars each. The sneakers also contain a drop of human blood in the sole, drawn from members of the Mischief team.

It’s a weird choice for an athletic shoe since, while Satan is an antagonist, he is also a loser who has been defeated over and over again, and will one day experience his final vanquishing.

The rapper released the shoes in conjunction with a music video called “Montero… call me by name,” in which he gives Satan a lap dance.

It was all intended to shock, but came as little surprise to anyone who has followed celebrity culture over the past decade. Gross, but boring.

The shoes resulted in a trademark infringement lawsuit from Nike, who claims not to have collaborated with the rapper.

It’s not Nike’s first time being at the center of a political storm over shoes.

In 2019, the company withdrew a shoe featuring a Besty Ross American flag, scheduled to be released for the Fourth of July, after an outcry from Colin Kapernick and the political Left.

There was a time when wearing a certain pair of sneakers simply revealed the sport you played or your favorite athlete. Now, your choice of shoes communicates a wide range of preferences, political leanings, and religious choices. They have become - in essence - a medium onto themselves.

As someone who opposes cancel culture and supports free speech and the free market, I am not calling for the government to shut down MSCHF or even to censor Lil’ Nas X. I am cautioning that more than ever- that the clothing and shoe brands you choose for yourselves and your kids make more than a fashion statement. In our deeply divided society, they are political and cultural statements.

The devil is in the details - so to speak - shop wisely.

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