Trouser tyranny

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Trouser tyranny is a belief that trousers are exclusively for men, or that garments with a skirt are exclusively for women.

Some fundamentalist Christians believe that it violates God's law for a woman to wear trousers or for a man not to wear trousers. They support their position with scripture, but their interpretation of Deuteronomy 22:5 and other scriptures misses the mark.


The website Bravehearts in Kilts Against Trouser Tyranny distinguished four motivations for either men or people assigned male at birth to wear a skirt:

  • Transgender: a person identifies as a woman or otherwise not a man.
  • Freestyler: a person wants to abolish gender stereotypes surrounding clothing in general.
  • Ethnic: a person of other than mainland Western European descent shows ethnic pride, or a person attends an ethnic celebration.
  • Braveheart: a person wears a skirted garment clearly made for men as everyday attire for comfort or equality reasons. Such styles tend to be adapted from other ethnic groups' everyday attire.

The Bravehearts movement cannot fight all battles at once. To challenge the core assumption that skirts are necessarily feminine, they wear styles already accepted elsewhere for men's wear. This selectively targets fundamentalists' misuse of scripture and other cases of institutional intolerance that they consider counterproductive to men's comfort. Bravehearts support trans rights but consider trans rights outside the movement's scope.

See also

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