The British brand distances itself from the far-right group and stops selling black and yellow polo shirts in North America.
British fashion label Fred Perry decided to stop selling a black and yellow polo shirt in North America after right-wing Proud Boys group adopted it as a uniform.
The Proud Boys, a self-described “Western chauvinist” group that rose to prominence following the election of President Donald Trump in 2016, also used the laurel wreath logo on flyers promoting a rally in Portland, Oregon over the weekend.
Fred Perry said in a September 24 statement: “If you see Proud Boys materials or products that contain our laurel wreaths or items in black / yellow / yellow, they have absolutely nothing to do with us.”
The Proud Boys’ rally on September 27 was relatively peaceful, as the right-wing group and their supporters encountered counter-protesters.
Hundreds of Proud Boys supporters gathered in black and yellow polo shirts and body armor to end the so-called “domestic terrorism” in democratically run Portland.
The group had forecast a crowd of at least 10,000, but police said fewer than 1,000 were in attendance.
A supporter of the far right group Proud Boys reacts at a rally in Portland, Oregon [Leah Millis/Reuters]Since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody in May, demonstrations against police brutality and racial injustice have continued every night in Portland.
The demonstrations have become violent at times, especially in the summer when some demonstrators repeatedly surrounded the federal court, at times attempting to break and even set it on fire.
The Trump administration responded by sending federal agents into the city who, among other things, “kidnapped” protesters in unmarked vans.
Trump, who made “law and order” a major theme of his re-election bid, identified Portland as one of several democratically-run cities that he says are “anarchist jurisdictions” whose federal funding should be cut.
The Justice Department has threatened to cut funding from the cities of New York, Seattle and Portland, where protests against Black Lives Matter have been ongoing in recent months.
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a group that tracks down “extremists” in the US and advocates legal assistance, said Trump’s actions had encouraged far-right actions.
“Groups like the Proud Boys have been encouraged by President Trump’s recent announcement that Portland, NYC and Seattle will be labeled” anarchist jurisdictions, “” Cassie Miller, senior research analyst at SPLC, said in a statement.
The Pro-Trump and Pro-Gun Right-Wing Proud Boys publicly denounce violence, but members often argue with left-wing opponents at rallies.
The male-only group describes itself as a fraternal organization that is “anti-racism” and “anti-political correctness”.
The SPLC classifies the Proud Boys as a hate group and cites the anti-Muslim and misogynistic rhetoric of their members.
While the Proud Boys continued to wear the yellow and black shirts at the rally on Saturday, Fred Perry referred to a 2017 response from Chairman John Flynn when asked if they supported the group: “Fred was the son of a working class Socialist MP who became world tennis champion at a time when tennis was an elite sport. He started a business with a Jewish businessman from Eastern Europe … No, we do not endorse the ideals or the group you are talking about. It goes against our beliefs. “