Bring back kindness


Emma Fudacz

What is it about the absence of two pieces of fabric that makes the wearer “unstable?”

As a kid, my mom always told me to wear what makes me feel good. According to Candace Owens, a conservative political activist, that should not apply to Harry Styles and other people who choose not to conform to stereotypical gendered clothing rules.

On Nov. 13, Styles appeared on the cover of Vogue magazine, the first solo man to ever do so. He was featured in a dress designed by Gucci, sparking debate on Twitter about fashion gender norms. Owens and other Twitter users called this Vogue issue “an outright attack.” and trended the saying “Bring back manly men.”

This is blatantly disrespectful towards the LGBTQ+ community and other people who choose not to conform to stereotypical gender norms. Someone who identifies as male, and chooses to dress in styles typically worn by women is still a man, and is not any less manly because of his fashion choices. Similarly, someone who identifies as female and dresses in styles typically worn by men is still a woman, and her clothing choices don’t make her any less feminine.

Many people who tweeted “Bring back manly men” said society depends on strong men. One of Styles’s fans pointed out the implied sexism in those tweets, saying “Our societies don’t depend on ‘strong’ men. They depend on women and men equally!!”

Owens also responded to a tweet suggesting that her statements may have inspired violence against gender-nonconforming people by laughing, and saying that user needed to have their head checked, showing that she does not care about the possible consequences of her disrespectful statements.

When asked about other men who have worn dresses in the past, including beloved icons such as David Bowie, Freddie Mercury, and Kurt Cobain, Owens called them “stupid”,and replied saying “stable men don’t wear ball gowns, the end,” suggesting that the various mental health problems these men had were connected to the fact that they chose to wear dresses.

If men who wear dresses are “unstable,” then what does that make Japanese men who wear kimonos? Or Scottish men who wear kilts?

If you really think about it, the only difference between a dress and pants is that there is one hole to put your legs through instead of two. What is it about the absence of two pieces of fabric that makes the wearer “unstable?”

In addition to trashing iconic celebrities and international cultures, Owens also claimed that toxic masculinity was a term made up by toxic women, which invalidates the experiences of men who have felt like they had to suppress their feelings because of toxic masculinity.

On Dec. 2, Styles posted a picture of himself to his Instagram with the caption “Bring back manly men,” showing he is unaffected by the petty comments of a D-list celebrity surrounding his historic Vogue issue.

Sorry, but I think I’m going to stick with my mom, Harry Styles, and everyone who chooses to be kind instead of being disrespectful about things that don’t affect them.