Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) is a woman of the people. So much so that she walked past a Black Lives Matter protest outside the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and joined the starry Met Gala inside as a guest earlier this week.
As the New York Post reported, AOC said she and New York-based designer Aurora James, whose dress she was wearing, were there to “kick open the doors at the Met.”
No need. AOC got her $30,000+ ticket comped.
The Met Gala is the annual fundraiser to benefit the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute. It’s known for celebrities, over-the-top-fashion, and lots and lots of money. In 2019, over $13 million reportedly was raised.
The talk of the evening, of course, was AOC’s white off-the-shoulder gown by James, emblazoned with the words “Tax the Rich” in red.
That’s the Squad star’s motto.
James, who launched the luxury label Brother Vellies, is known for producing shoes and accessories and couldn’t calculate the cost of AOC’s dress, FastCompany reported. To get an idea, a pair of sky blue pumps with Swarovski crystals and pearls by James will set you back $715.
According to Fox News, during an interview on the red carpet, Ocasio-Cortez said she and James discussed “what it means to be working-class women of color at the Met.”
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez makes at least $174,000 a year. She is not working class by a long shot.
Clearly AOC saw her dress as social warrior armor — kicking down the doors (which were being held open for her) and telling the rich folks they needed to fund her Green New Deal and everything else on her agenda.
“We need to break the fourth wall and challenge some of the institutions, and while the Met is known for its spectacle, we should have a conversation about it,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
And what would that conversation be? What the fallout of AOC’s 70% tax on the wealthy might look like? Fundraising for the Met is a tiny sliver of the pie.
The rich do more than shoot into space and land back on Earth triumphantly minutes later. They spend some of that loot on things like pricey blue pumps with Swarovski crystals, fund startup companies and give away sizable chunks of change.
BusinessInsider reported on the 2019 WealthX Billionaire Census, which tracked, among other things, which causes billionaires donated to and in what percentage.
Among its findings:
32.6% of the world’s billionaire population gave to environmental, conservation and animal causes
31.9% donated to children and youth development
57.4% gave to health care and medical research
57.6% donated to arts and culture
This is just a sampling, and the study noted that the numbers never added up to 100% because people donated to more than one cause.
AOC has been called out before for her lack of economics savvy, and we fear it’s showing again, despite the long hemline on her gown.
Though wealthy benefactors fundraising for a costume department in a museum may strike some as so much excess, it’s spectacle that attracts tourists. Art museums, science museums, live theater, concerts, restaurants — you name it, disposable income is good, because it fuels our economy.
Now there’s a slogan that would look good on a dress.
Today’s editorial is from The Boston Herald. The views expressed are not necessarily those of this newspaper.