I am a leggings/yoga pants aficionado. I cannot wear them to work, but as soon as I am home for the evening and weekend? As the title suggests, leggings for days! What is better than being comfortable and looking snazzy while doing it? Nothing, that’s what, and leggings give you that opportunity. I genuinely believe, despite the many arguments against them, that women can still look classy and modest in leggings as long as they fit properly (i.e. are a big enough size that they are not stretched to the point of being see-through). I’m obviously a fan.
I recently read this article urging women to stop wearing leggings or yoga pants in public. When I first read the article, I was deeply offended, however, I knew that I needed time to gather my thoughts and carefully calculate my rebuttal. Since then, I have read some awesome responses. My favorite is “Why I am Going to Keep Wearing Leggings.” Like the blogger, Shannon Hall, I have a few points of discussion to add to the yoga pants/leggings debate that has been raging on social media networks throughout the web. So, here are my three reasons that I will keep wearing leggings in both my home and in public (when I am not at work, of course).
3. I do not believe in guilt tripping.
Although Veronica Partridge contends that it is not her intention to encourage women to sway from wearing leggings in public, anyone with a basic knowledge of Aristotle’s rhetorical appeal, pathos, can see straight through that faulty assertion. Partridge’s intent to sway other women is as transparent as glass. You can read “Why I Chose to No Longer Wear Leggings” for yourself and see if you interpret it the same way that I do, but I cannot imagine other responses to the post.
Now, I could care less if Partridge feels convicted and chooses not to wear leggings. Like her, I am a Christian, and I have my convictions as well, however, I do not engage in legalistic guilt trips with people who choose to live differently than me. It is one thing that she abstains from wearing leggings. But, it is an entirely separate issue when she urges other women to do the same by means of making them feel that their bodies are no more than sexual entities that drive men to lust. Sorry Ronny, but I value myself a bit more than that as does my husband.
2. The mindset from this article fosters insecurity and jealousy in otherwise healthy relationships.
Colby and I are beyond infatuated with each other, and we have an incredible marriage. This does not mean that we do not find other people physically attractive. We are, after all, human beings with human hormones.
We both acknowledge that we will see handsome and beautiful people, but we do not let that reality make us insecure. As a matter of fact, we usually point these people out to each other.
“That guy has a nice body.”
“I wish I had that girl’s hair.”
“Oww oww, can we buy you a suit like that?”
“That skirt is flattering on her.”
We have said these things to each other multiple times, and we have never hurt each other or our marriage by doing so. And, we totally forget these conversations within five minutes of having them. We do so without any jealousy and envy kindling in our hearts. We love each other and, while we may be momentarily taken back by other people—that’s exactly what these instances are: fleeting moments— at the end of the day, we only have eyes and hearts for each other. It would take a lot more than leggings or yoga pants to invalidate the vows we made to God and each other. If someone is in a relationship that can be so easily destroyed, the relationship is headed for destruction with or without the presence of leggings in the world.
1. The argument in the first article only furthers the tragedies of gender inequality and rape culture that plague the Western world.
I am flabbergasted when I see women engage in behavior or arguments that promote rape culture (if you are unfamiliar with the term, Google it now!). Regardless of our differing world views, we should all band together in hopes of furthering our place in society as more than sexual novelties at the disposal of men. From experience, I can also say that the boys (I refuse to call them men) who deliberately lust after women will do so simply because women have two X chromosomes. In my recent post “I just felt like running,” I brought up the fact that I have often been cat-called while wearing ratchet sweatpants that were probably covered in cat hair. What we wear has nothing to do with the problem at hand, rape culture, and blaming women for the problem at all is a slippery slope. “Your clothes make him think inappropriate thoughts about you” sounds an awful lot like the “what were you wearing” question that rape victim are asked unfairly.
Can we also talk about how insulting Partridge’s article is toward men? To me, she illustrates them like hormone-crazed rabbits who cannot channel their thoughts once a temptress wearing yoga pants—I say that sarcastically—walks into a room. If I did not make it clear enough in point two, I have more confidence in my husband than that. Maybe it is naïve on my part, but I refuse to believe that the vast majority of men in our world are so dense and barbaric that they simply cannot control themselves around the opposite sex. Surely our species has evolved more than that over the years and most men in the world are actually like my husband.
Gender inequality hurts everyone, including men. And while leggings are definitely not the greatest cause of gender inequality and rape culture, the reproach women receive for wearing them is a great illustration of just how far our world needs to go to achieve true equality and safety among men and women.
So, don’t expect me to stop wearing leggings or yoga pants any time soon. I probably have more at my house than the tackiest ‘80s music video. I will not think poorly of women who choose not to wear leggings, because that would be hypocritical on my part. I simply hope and pray that the convictions about which they speak originate from God and not from a culture that insists women should be smart, but not too smart; outgoing, but not too aggressive; attractive, but not too sexy.
I hope these convictions do not originate from a culture in which women will never win.