OUR SEPTEMBER ISSUE, FEATURING COVER STAR MARK WAHLBERG, HITS NEWSSTANDS TODAY.
No one should be able to tell your politics by how you dress.
In a perfectly stylish world — a sharper world — liberals and conservatives, Republicans and Democrats, would all wear suits that fit, shoes that draw just the right amount of attention, and have comparable pops of colour on their lapels. In this world, we can all agree on certain inalienable truths — right or left, we can all have a crush on Aya Cash or enjoy a good Mark Wahlberg movie.
But these days, it’s hard to avoid the political, and you might notice it creeping into this issue a bit more than usual (with an eye to balance, of course). In fact, the first time I read Alex Nino Gheciu’s interview with Kevin O’Leary, the Dragons’ Den star and blustering voice of conservative frustration in Canada, I came away impressed. Or at least calmed. For a man who is capitalizing on his frequent comparison to Donald Trump, I was happy that he seemed to have core values and opinions that — even if I don’t agree with them — are at least informed. Plus, unlike the man he’s said to be the Canadian version of, he has embraced his hairline in a dignified, Captain Picard-esque way. See, we’ll always comment on style.
In that context, we feel compelled to pick a side in the American election; not as experts on policy or politics, but as men interested in style. We often praise luxury in these pages, but we’re quick to explain that there is a difference between cost and quality. The latter should always inform and justify the former. A Rolex is expensive, but with good reason. A solid gold cellphone, studded with diamonds, is costly for cost’s sake. Trump’s brand of luxury is an example of the latter. Big gold signs are ostentatious, whereas true luxury is often subtle, even silent, like having the time to read, the means to travel, the refinement of taste. And that’s really it: a man as wealthy as Trump should have better taste. His suits should fit better. His hair, or whatever that is clinging to his head, should look better. His grammar, even in off-the-cuff interviews, should be accurate (never mind true, but his sentences should be syntactically sound, or at least complete).
Let pundits talk about his temperament and qualifications (or lack thereof). Let them debate whether his proposals are viable or dangerous. We won’t speak to that — at least not until he seriously proposes to build a YUGE wall along our border (and make us pay for it). But — and I realize this is a pretty controversial statement, which I’m prepared to defend — Trump could really stand to up his style game.
Because, despite how he acts, this election thing isn’t a game at all.