I hate skinny jeans on men with the burning passion of a thousand fiery suns. I hate them with the same enmity as as mongoose considers a King Cobra. I hate them with the same hostility vegans feels towards Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. I hate skinny jeans on men like I hate mustaches on women.
I hate them.
Let me begin my diatribe, on what appears to be a slow news day, by saying that my hatred for skinny jeans on men is a subjective hatred that is not anchored in a chapter-and-verse of the Bible and neither do I intend to make a purely theological argument against men wearing denim tights. My hatred for skinny jeans on men is instead anchored in manliness, common decency, and sincere mourning for Western Civilization.
The first time I saw men wearing the hip-snuggling, calf-hugging britches was at the Billings zoo. I was more intrigued by (who I assumed to be) the four young homosexual and cross-dressing men wandering the zoo than the animals inside the exhibits. I found out soon after that ostensibly straight men were beginning to wear these garments.
The young men weren’t gay. They were stylish.
In reality, any Biblical argument that could be conveyed to disavow stretchy pants (insert Nacho Libre’s voice) on men could likewise be used for women. And for the record, Christian women shouldn’t wear yoga pants out of the house any more than they should be doing yoga. That I have to write this bears testimony to the general ungodliness of our culture.
If your pants look like they were painted on, they’re too tight.
If your pants imprint your panty line, they’re too tight.
If your pants don’t conceal every twist and turn of your body, they’re too tight.
If the only thing your pants leave to the imagination is your tan line, they’re too tight.
I’m a curmudgeon. This is my website and I’ll be a curmudgeon if I want to (and get off my lawn, while you’re at it. I find myself ranting with the “rent is too damn high” guy, except instead of rent being high, I’m complaining about pants being tight. I’m being curmudgeonry. I get it…still don’t care.
However, my hatred for skinny jeans on men surpasses that for skinny jeans on women. There is something innate about the female psyche that – if not tempered by Biblical modesty – desires to show the attractiveness of their figure in greater detail than is generally wholesome. It’s part of femininity, even though it is sometimes misapplied.
Women, you see, are often adorned with accessories to accent or highlight their beauty. This tendency isn’t necessarily sinful, but it can be offensive to God given the extent it is taken. In Isaiah 3:16-24, God gets so angry at Israelite women for walking ‘seductively’ with ‘bangles on their feet’ (meaning that they were covered in jewelry from head to toe) that God said he’d rip off their anklets, headbands, and ornaments and scalp their hair.
Yet, the Bible doesn’t prohibit a woman accenting her beauty in one way or another. In fact, in Ezekiel 16:11-12, God himself placed jewelry on the women of Israel. The difference between Isaiah’s curse and Ezekiel’s blessing seems to be the intention of the women. In Isaiah, the women were dolling themselves up seductively. In Ezekiel, they were being blessed for their faithfulness.
Ultimately, the Bible has a take-it-or-leave-it ethos when it comes to women ‘upgrading’ their appearance. In Jeremiah 4:30, God points out that their gold jewelry and “eye paint” makes the women vain and makes them less respected by their lovers. There’s some truth to that loss of dignity that comes from being painted up like a street-walker.
The Bible’s primary admonition on this point comes from 1 Timothy 2:9, which instructs women to adorn themselves with “proper clothing, modestly and discreetly,” and not with expensive or over-done modifications that are meant to display wealth or self-centeredness.
When we let the Bible speak on the matter of dress, we can cast to the waste-bin the mantra that “God doesn’t care about clothing.” That’s an asinine assessment. God invented clothing (Genesis 3:21) to cover skin, and clothing itself is a metaphor for salvation to be found in Jesus as the covering of our shame. The Bible says lots about clothing choice.
And yet, when I see a woman in pair of skinny jeans, it doesn’t invoke in me the same annoyance as when I see a “man” pry himself into a pair of stretch denim. There is an innate, kinetic, guttural animosity I feel towards a man who wears such a thing.
And for preachers who wear such things? Ugh. Let me lay aside the fact that I have never heard a decent exposition of Scripture from a man in skinny jeans, I just find it repugnant on a man more so than on a woman.
But why? Maybe it’s just my heterosexuality talking. Or maybe it’s my toxic masculinity. But, I think it’s deeper.
The Bible doesn’t caution men not to go overboard with style. The Bible cautions women not to go overboard on style.
There are two possible reasons for this. The first explanation is that the Bible doesn’t care if men are immodest, stylistic, and gratuitously adorned. In short, this explanation is that God has a double-standard and it’s fine for men to peacock around like metrosexuals with manicures and carefully quaffed hair. The second explanation is the Biblical writers didn’t have to tell men not to care so much about fashion and sensual appearance because men – by nature – aren’t prone to peacock around like limp-wristed daisies to begin with.
I’m choosing the second explanation.
Historically, men have not needed rebuke for tasteless and immodest style because being seen as a metro-sexualized girly man wasn’t a temptation. Typically, that has been a warning far more needed among the fairer sex.
And yet today, what is considered ‘manly’ is changing drastically. Recently, I had reported about an all-male ‘cuddling club‘ promoted by a university in Philadelphia that is designed to combat toxic masculinity. So the men get together and cuddle, gently caressing each other’s ears and petting each other. That’s toxic, but it’s not masculinity. That’s the gayest thing I’ve ever heard of that doesn’t explicitly contain actual acts of sodomy. And yet, this is done in the name of ‘manhood.’
Baloney. That’s behaviorally neutering men. You might as well take an actual rubber band and cowboy castration tools and get it over with.
The fact is, our culture is struggling from a lack of manliness.
Boys, which have traditionally done better than girls in certain fields like math and science, are now struggling behind and not academically flourishing. We’ve taken away the toys that reflect manly interests – like tools and guns – and given them barbies and sit them before trannies at library story-time. Our teenage boys, who once pursued real-life girls and had part-time jobs now stay home playing video games and pleasuring themselves to pornography, living at home until their mid-twenties.
We’re not only losing manhood in our culture; we are losing men. Which, of course, leads me to skinny jeans.
“Don’t dress for the job you have, dress for the job you want,” is how the old adage goes. I would suggest that if you want to be a man, start dressing like it.
Practically speaking, I can’t think of a more impractical garment than skinny jeans. At least the Scottish kilt was worn by the Jacobite rebels as a military uniform in order to allow them freedom of movement to better impale their opponents. In World War I the Scottish special forces – called “the Black Watch” were still wearing kilts during combat and received the nickname, “Ladies from Hell.” But I bet nobody said that to their face. Kilts, worn for practical purposes of work and combat, are infinitely more masculine than the tights Steven Furtick snuggles into with a shoehorn to preach in on Sunday morning.
When I unload my pockets at night I feel like Batman unloading his bat-belt (or that classic scene from Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, when Mel Gibson unloads his gear at Bartertown). I’m throwing out basic things no man should be without, commonly called “EDC” or “every day carry” items. You know, stuff like guns, spare mags, a pocket knife, lighter, pen, flashlight, wallet, etc. How do you fit that stuff in your skinny jeans?
I’m from the part of fly-over America that has a culturally-understood agreement that men don’t leave home without at least a pocket knife. I’m afraid that if Furtick or another skinny jean-wearing preacher had a pocket knife or flashlight in his pants, it might cause women to get the wrong impression. I mean, don’t you want some room in there? At what point does the tightness of your pants become a genuine health issue?
Women can get by fine with skinny jeans because they wear purses. It shouldn’t be surprising then that the same guys wearing skinny jeans are also the ones strutting around with purses. I’m not making this up. Colloquially, they’re known as murses.
I don’t want to live in this world any more. Or as John would say, “Maranatha.”
Women have always had a sense of fashionability. Men, on the other hand, we expect to be more forward-thinking. When you look at a photo from a woman of 30 years ago, there’s much face-palming to be had. She is dated immediately by fashion, and sometimes ridiculously so. Men, on the other hand, seem to be timeless in normal pants and normal shirts with normal haircuts. Trust me on this skinny jeans thing; 30 years from now, your grandkids are going to make fun of you men, and you deserve it walking around with such unabashed jackhattery.
Had I been a writer in the 90s, I might have been equally loathe-some toward “hammer pants.” But, I’m not. I’m a writer in the 21st Century and I hate skinny jeans, which are equally as dumb as hammer pants, except immodest to boot.
I’m tired of being told I can’t say a man isn’t a woman and a woman isn’t a man. I’m tired of being told I have to respect someone’s gender-choice, as though gender were ever a choice. I’m tired of women who dress like men and men who dress like women (Deuteronomy 22:5).
And for the love of all that is good and pure, so long as breath is still in me, I am going to hate it when men wear skinny jeans.
[Editor’s Note: Contributed by JD Hall]
PS. Also, you don’t look as good in them as you think you do.