Skirt Yes, Shorts No might be unfair towards men. But the reason it exists in the first place, is, that women still have to be fuckable.
At the beginning of this week, a man called Joey Barge, decided to wear shorts in the office due to extremely warm temperatures in the UK. He was sent home by his boss, because the office dress code wouldn’t allow such inappropriate clothing. So he decided to come back in a dress again. His boss would give in eventually, since dresses apparently are fine. Ever since, 3/4 shorts are fine.
Joey Barge had his fair share of buzz on social media. More and more employees around the world, and even pupils in boarding schools have copied Barges creative protest.
And ever since, everybody is talking about how unfair office dress codes are towards men, because shorter dresses or skirts seem to be ok to be worn by women. Poor men!
Well, of course it is unfair. But let’s also ask ourselves why a shorter piece of cloth is only considered to be offensive, if worn by a man. Why, indeed, is it ok for a woman to wear a skirt? The reason lies in history. Let’s take a look back to the 50s and 60s. To the times when a woman in an office had one purpose: To represent the enterprise towards the outside, since as secretaries they where the first the customer would see. And, finally, to please the eye of the male employees towards the inside. In other words: A woman in an office had to be one thing: she had to be hot.
That is one reason why still today, dress codes are different for men and women: Girls who have worked as hostesses at business events for example, often still have to wear skirts that end above the knee, alongside uncomfortable high heels.
Clearly, the problem is, that the still dominating male gaze in offices sees no problem in the fact, that a woman not only looks neat while doing her job and dealing with customers, but additionally is fuckable as well. While that same gaze is obviously taking offense by some hairy male legs.
So yes, it’s good to question standards that seem to be, well, questionable. But maybe let’s abolish these dress codes, because they are inherently sexist. Not because it is unfair towards men.