Strapback Saturdays: POLO RUGBY “Tribal Camp” Strapback Cap

Posted by Woody, June 23rd, 2012 07:06 am under Style

The plight of the American Indian is a sad one and its been well documented. In recent years the perception of Native Americans has changed dramatically. RALPH LAUREN has long used images such as Indian heads to accentuate his pieces and add character. The strapback cap featured in this post sports a washed Olive Green crown with a colorful Indian profile embroidered on the front panel. Available now at



Isn't this offensive? A Native American head on a preppy brand? It looks like a trophy head. It will possibly be worn on the head of one of the descendants of the genocidal invaders. More likely on that of someone who benefitted from the genocide. (Although I won't wear this cap, I have to acknowledge that I benefit greatly from the genocide, like every other American citizen who is not a Native American.)


Suppose it were the head of someone from another severely oppressed group. Like a black slave. (in blackface?) Suppose Hitler had won WWII and succeeded in exterminating most of the Jews? What would we think of a cap sold in Germany with a Jew's head on it? Suppose that, in the future, the Israelis successfully take over Palestinian lands. What would we think if they start wearing caps with Palestinian fighters' heads on them?


Maybe such caps in the first two cases wouldn't be made. The Native Americans were able to fight back, so the head really can be considered a trophy. Hard earned. The Blacks were brought here in chains and made slaves while the Jews were made defenseless in the camps. Exploitation and killing were too easy, so no war glory there.