Billy Porter criticizes Harry Styles as Vogue magazine‘s first man cover star.
The former One Direction star graced the US edition of the prestigious publication’s December 2020 issue, marking the first time in history that the honor has been bestowed upon an individual.
Despite apologizing over the controversy two years ago, he has again attacked the decision, however, Billy Porter previously said he ‘changed the game in terms of breaking gender norms in fashion by taking issue with the cover.
He revealed while doing a quiz with editor Anna Wintour a few months before the Vogue US cover: ‘The guy said to me at the end, “How can we do better?” And I got so distracted that I didn’t say what I should have said.
Speaking to the Telegraph, he admitted that he wished he had told her: ‘Use your power as Vogue to elevate the voices of the leaders of this de-gendering of the fashion movement’… Six months later, Harry Styles is the first person to appear on the cover.’
He sent flowers to Harry ‘as an apology’ after initially speaking out against the cover, and has reiterated that he doesn’t blame the Watermelon Sugar singer.
‘It’s not Harry Styles’s fault that he happens to be white and cute and straight and fit into the infrastructure that way … I call out the gatekeepers,’ he claimed.
Billy Porter who acknowledged he is not the ‘first’ to push the boundaries of gender stereotypes in pop culture, pointed to late singers David Bowie and Sylvester who insisted there is a deeper issue with the cover.
Billy Porter added: ‘[Harry is] white and he’s straight. That’s why he’s on the cover. Non-binary blah blah blah blah. No. It doesn’t feel good to me.
‘You’re using my community – or your people are using my community – to elevate you. You haven’t had to sacrifice anything.’
Harry is known for his eclectic and androgynous style, and for the Vogue shoot, he wore skirts and dresses as well as trousers and shirts.
Admitting that he always liked dressing up as a child, he previously stated: ‘Clothes are there to have fun with and experiment with and play with. What’s really exciting is that all of these lines are just kind of crumbling away.’