Catholic mom wants girls to stop wearing leggings because it 'exposes their nether regions' to men
A Catholic mother of four sons sparked outrage when she put out a letter imploring girls to stop wearing 'leggings' only to get lectured by dozens of men and women who lectured her about personal responsibility and gender politics.
Maryann White decided to write a letter to the editor which was published in 'The Observer' which is a student newspaper at the University of Notre Dame. In the letter, she asks women to consider mothers like her and stop sporting form-hugging leggings which "expose their nether regions" to men who cannot help themselves but notice. As reported by DailyMail, White wrote, "I'm not trying to insult anyone or infringe upon anyone's rights. I'm just a Catholic mother of four sons with a problem that only girls can solve: leggings."
She shared that wearing leggings as pants "baffles" her as "they are an unforgiving garment". "Last fall, they obtruded painfully on my landscape. I was at Mass at the Basilica with my family. In front of us was a group of young women, all wearing very snug-fitting leggings and all wearing short-waisted tops (so that the lower body was uncovered except for the leggings). Some of them truly looked as though the leggings had been painted on them," White said.
"A world in which women continue to be depicted as "babes" by movies, video games, music videos, etc. makes it hard on Catholic mothers to teach their sons that women are someone's daughters and sisters. That women should be viewed first as people — and all people should be considered with respect. I wonder why no one thinks it’s strange that the fashion industry has caused women to voluntarily expose their nether regions in this way," she continued.
She further added, "I was ashamed for the young women at Mass. I thought of all the other men around and behind us who couldn’t help but see their behinds. My sons know better than to ogle a woman’s body — certainly when I’m around (and hopefully, also when I’m not). They didn’t stare, and they didn’t comment afterward," she revealed. "But you couldn’t help but see those blackly naked rear ends. I didn’t want to see them — but they were unavoidable. How much more difficult for young guys to ignore them," she continued.
White also said that it's not only her sons who are affected by leggings but also "the fathers and brothers of your friends, the male students in your classes, the men of every variety who visit campus." She further added, "I’m fretting both because of unsavory guys who are looking at you creepily and nice guys who are doing everything to avoid looking at you. For the Catholic mothers who want to find a blanket to lovingly cover your nakedness and protect you — and to find scarves to tie over the eyes of their sons to protect them from you!"
"Leggings are so naked, so form-fitting, so exposing," she complained. "Could you think of the mothers of sons the next time you go shopping and consider choosing jeans instead? You have every right to wear them. But you have every right to choose not to."
Her letter drew a variety of protests on social media with people of all genders posting photos of themselves wearing leggings on their accounts. Many were of the opinion that the mother should reframe the conversation since it dangerously veered towards telling women that they need to dress properly in order not to be a distraction to men and this only brings us back to the sexualization and subsequent subjugation of women’s bodies.