In Detail: H.I.M Tee - Cover

In Detail: H.I.M Tee

In 1963, the emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie I, meaning “Might of the Trinity,” declared to the United Nations: “That until the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned [...] We Africans will fight, if necessary, and we know that we shall win, as we are confident in the victory of good over evil.” Thirty-three years earlier, he was crowned the emperor of Ethiopia in an event attended by royalty and politicians from around the world; Time Magazine even featured the new emperor on its cover.

In 1976, Bob Marley, still the most famous Rastafarian in history, released the album Rastaman Vibration with his band the Wailers, including the song “War,” which took its lyrics from Selassie’s famous U.N. speech in order to bring the emperor’s call for equality to a new generation. Our tee features the letters “H.I.M” (an initialism for Haile Selassie’s title of “His Imperial Majesty”), an image of the crowned emperor, and an excerpt from his speech, which, like Marley, we chose for its ongoing relevance: because the rule of international law has been broken, because people are still being treated badly, because we still have racism, we still have sexism, we still have xenophobia, because bigotry still exists. Everywhere is war.