FREDERICKSBURG, Va. — As pro-Trump supporters descended on D.C. for the second MAGA march Saturday, some men wearing Proud Boys gear were seen sporting yellow kilts...to the shock of the kilts' maker.
The owner of Verillas in Fredericksburg, Allister Greenbrier, said his business produced the yellow kilts seen in the photo snapped by NPR reporter Hannah Allam.
Other videos have circulated social media showing the same men mooning the crowd, with the words "F*** Antifa" written on their butts in sharpie markers.
"We just felt powerless and frustrated and angry that we saw our products on this group that we see as a hate group," Greenbrier said. "We just didn’t know what to do."
Greenbrier's business is LGBTQ-owned and operated and has long-supported GLAAD, so since its inception in 2014, he said Verillas has been a bastion of love and acceptance.
He said he spoke with his marketing director about the best way to respond, and they tweeted out this statement, "Disgusted to see members of a fascist terrorist organization wearing our products. We're a LGBTQIA+ owned, operated, designed, and lived. We're against everything they stand for. I see $750 of our gear in that picture, and I just gave $1,000 to the NAACP to redirect hate to love."
Though at first their tweet sparked body-shaming comments of the men in the picture (which Greenbrier said they also do not support) and an argument over what qualifies as a kilt, many replied with messages of support for their business and stance.
"I thought it was a nightmare scenario at first, but now it’s turned around a bit," Greenbrier said. "We’ve gotten so much love and support back, I think we’re going to take a few more steps forward with the momentum we have.”
In the meantime, he said they've pulled the yellow kilts from sale and are offering a free color exchange for anyone who has previously purchased the yellow version but does not want to be associated with the MAGA march.
“Trying to figure out what can we do with the voice that we have, now that we’ve realized what we have," Greenbrier said. "It’s a big responsibility, so we’re kind of hesitant to leap too quickly, but we want to do some good.”
Greenbrier said they're hoping to develop a line to support Black Lives Matter in design and profits.