This past week, Christian Dior’s creative designer, John Galliano, was caught on film making anti-Semitic slurs and praising Hitler to a couple sitting at the table beside him in a French cafe.
“I love Hitler. People like you would be dead. Your mothers, your forefathers, would all be f****** gassed,” Galliano said in the video.
Soon after, Galliano was arrested. In France, making anti-Semitic remarks is punishable by up to six months in prison or a fine of up to 22,500 euros.
After his offensive remarks and arrest, Galliano was suspended and soon fired by Christian Dior because of the company’s “zero-tolerance” policy.
Although Galliano’s artistic intelligence was an essential part of the company, chief executive Sidney Toledano made it clear that an anti-Semitist would no longer be associated with Christian Dior, even after 15 years of partnership.
“I very firmly condemn what was said by John Galliano, which totally contradicts the values which have always been defended by Christian Dior,” Toledano said in a statement.
As the incident occurred during Oscar weekend, Natalie Portman, the face of Dior perfume was left shocked and disgusted. Rumors circulated that Portman was initially planning on wearing a Dior dress to the Academy Awards, but changed her mind when Galliano’s incident surfaced. As a proud Israeli-Jew and A-List actress, Portman spoke up.
“I am deeply shocked and disgusted by the video of John Galliano’s comments that surfaced today,” Portman said. “In light of this video, and as an individual who is proud to be Jewish, I will not be associated with Mr. Galliano in any way. I hope at the very least, these terrible comments remind us to reflect and act upon combating these still-existing prejudices that are the opposite of all that is beautiful.”