New York Times reporter Ruth La Ferla penned a profile of Breitbart News’s fashion critic — and immigration reporter — John Binder for the paper’s Style section. Yes, you read that correctly.
In the must-read article, readers learn about how Breitbart’s coverage of Melania Trump and global fashion fits with the conservative news website’s mission (hint: politics is downstream from culture). Also, you’ll see why Breitbart’s resident fashion expert thinks Melania Trump’s “bitch-goddess ultra-femininity” makes her one of “the greatest living women.” Highlights include praise for Nicole Kidman, shade for Jane Fonda, and you’ll learn if Binder would rather write for iconic establishment outlets like Vogue or W:
Yes, Breitbart News has a fashion critic. His sideline: immigration. https://t.co/tXXEmPQKQ1
— NYT Styles (@NYTStyles) November 1, 2017
“I don’t live this grand fabulous lifestyle,” said Mr. Binder, who was reared in Slidell, La., near New Orleans, the youngest of eight siblings in a family of moderate means. “I don’t come from a place of growing up in a grand apartment in the West Village, from a place of having the same opinion as everyone else.”
Of course, his column is not all Melania, all the time. Mr. Binder shuttles between coverage of style and — wait for it — immigration. His recent reports on that politically freighted beat, which takes up roughly 60 percent of his time, include an account of a California woman who obtained United States citizenship without being able to speak, read or write English. And he wags a finger at Ivanka Trump, not a current Breitbart favorite. At a recent dinner panel, Ms. Trump referred to the young immigrants covered by the DACA program as “innocent people,” while failing to mention, Mr. Binder writes, “some of the egregious crimes committed by illegal aliens.”
How does he reconcile his fashion reporting with his coverage of immigration? Not a problem, Mr. Binder said. “We’re one of the very few news outlets that cover immigration from the point of view of the American worker.”
His style analysis is in line with that mission, he said. “We’re reporting with the gaze of ordinary people who want to look at photos of beautiful women in beautiful clothes.”
Read it all here.