** Update 4:29 p.m.: According to sources, Galliano has checked into rehab
The Shmooze is ready for hateful fashion pirate John Galliano to slither off to rehab or Mel Gibson’s house or wherever it is that disgraced anti-Semitic ranters go, but first the newly fired Christian Dior designer had to issue a faux apology.
“Anti-Semitism and racism have no part in our society,” Galliano said in a statement released today through a British law firm. “I unreservedly apologize for my behavior in causing any offence.”
That whole “unreservedly” part wasn’t actually true, however, as Galliano went on to paint himself as the victim of the now-famous incident last week at a cafe in Paris, where the designer allegedly launched into a racist and anti-Semitic tirade against a couple at a nearby table. On Monday, video of a separate incident appeared online that showed Galliano proclaiming “I love Hitler,” and telling onlookers that their Jewish relatives would have been “f—ing gassed.”
The designer was subsequently denounced by Natalie Portman and fired by Christian Dior, but has only partly taken responsibility for his actions. The designer claimed in today’s statement that he had been “subjected to verbal harassment and an unprovoked assault when an individual tried to hit me with a chair having taken violent exception to my look and my clothing.” Even if that’s true, Galliano didn’t bother to explain why his response was to praise Hitler.
In any case, the designer has found at least a few supporters in the fashion industry, who’ve praised his talent and said his firing represents a loss for fashion.
“Sex and the City” designer Patricia Field went a bizarre step further, however, likening Galliano to — of all people — Mel Brooks. Field claimed Galliano was “acting out a character” during the rant — which character, exactly? — before incoherently adding, “‘John lives in theatre. It’s theatre. It’s farce. But people in fashion don’t recognize the farce in it. All of a sudden they don’t know him. But it’s OK when it’s Mel Brooks’ ‘The Producers’ singing Springtime for Hitler.”
“Believe me,” she continued. “My name is Field — my stepfather was Jewish.”