Oh dear, student leaders at Exeter University have really got their nappies in a knot. They're warning students that cross-dressing is offensive to transsexuals.
Come again? I'm loath to use that much mis-applied expression "political correctness gone mad", but that's what it is.
The Students Guild maintains that cross-dressing creates a parody of women and is the equivalent of "blacking-up". It is mocking transsexuals who are still in-between genders.
They really haven't thought it through, as more enlightened students have since pointed out.
Cross-dressing is not only harmless fun, but it breaks down gender roles and the absurd rules about "gender-appropriate" clothing.
Yes, there are some drag queens who ridicule women, but the vast majority are simply liberating themselves from the tyranny of shirts, ties and suits. In fact many dress as women specifically to celebrate female beauty and adornment.*
Okay, some drag queens are so inept they end up as hopelessly unconvincing women, but that doesn't amount to "parody", only an aesthetic blind-spot.
The supreme irony of all this is that transsexuals themselves are cross-dressing. So by what strange logic can it also be offensive?
The Clare Project, a transgender support group, has already criticised the student leaders for trying to be politically correct and getting it wrong. Well said. Men in skirts are simply that - men in skirts.
*I'm confining myself to men here, as women are effectively "cross-dressing" on a daily basis anyway.
By an odd coincidence, John has posted on the very same subject, in his own inimitable style.