by Aspen Evans, contributor
According to an article in the Daily Beast last month, a group of male students and teachers in Nantes, France protested the blatant sexism in our society by coming to school clad in skirts. The “Lift the Skirt” movement was orchestrated across 27 schools in the area. As expected, the movement was met with opposition by conservatives. In a society that has come so far from the days of traditional gender roles, why is something as minor as a piece of clothing deemed offensive and unnatural?
Looking back to the use of skirts in the world’s early history, both men and women in the southern regions of Asia, Scotland, Ireland and even soldiers in Ancient Greece wore skirts. What makes us think that we are so evolved from these cultures that a man wearing a skirt is too risqué?
On the opposite side, it took our society until the early 20th century for women to be allowed to wear pants, which was a big deal at the time. It’s been 100 years or so since then and yet men are still met with ridicule for a pleated skirt. As a society on the brink of dispelling gender roles and identities with the media detailed state after state doing away with gay marriage bans and TV shows such as “Glee,” “Awkward,” “Teen Wolf,” “Orange is the New Black” and “Modern Family” helping the public become less oversensitive about homosexuality, you would think something as simple as a skirt wouldn’t cause such an issue.
A piece of fabric that a person puts on their body should not be license to question a person’s “manhood” or gender. If irrelevant and outdated traditions weren’t so heavily embedded into the elders of this country, then the current generation, the ones that are setting out to make change and fix the mistakes of the older generations, could push past all the nonsense and get to the heart of real issues affecting our world. I’m not saying every man should go out and buy a pink miniskirt. No. This is not 2003, it’s not Wednesday and they aren’t Regina George. But for the sake of time, space and energy that no one should be wasting on this “issue” — let the man wear a skirt.
Overall, if you still aren’t sold on the whole men-wearing-skirts idea, just remember if Kanye did it proudly then you can, too.