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Hippie Element

dress to a feeling more than an expectation


Elvis Presley's Letter to President Nixon
Elvis Presley's Letter to President Nixon

Elvis and the Hippie Element

My friends and family always referred to my fashion of dress outside of the office as that of a "hippie", so I looked for a name consisting of the word "hippie" that described my style. When I googled "hippie" and the word "element", I found that Elvis penned these words in a letter to President Nixon.

In December of 1970, Elvis Presley hand delivered a letter to President Nixon offering his help. His desire was to be deputized as a special drug agent because ".... the Hippie Element .....do not consider me as their enemy or as they call it the establishment."

The entire letter can be read on the National Archive's website.

Well, Elvis did get his badge. When the President agreed to give him the badge, much to everyone's surprise, Elvis gave President Nixon a hug.

Elvis's Badge

Elvis however was not the first to coin the term. On October 2, 1968 a group of students from Old Dominion College (now Old Dominion University) protested the war in Vietnam at a Nixon Campaign rally held at the Norfolk Municipal Arena. A report from the NFO (Norfolk FBI field office) dated November 11, 1968 has the FBI referencing a group of demonstrators as including the "hippie element" that was observed as being "dirty, unkempt, bearded young people with mustaches and long hair."

While that doesn't exactly peg my appearance, the hippie element, to me, is about having the confidence to show an individual style that reflects your own personality and mood.

I'd like to think of it more as a guideline than a rule......