It’s 2022 — why do some people still think cross-dressing is funny?
Perhaps the pep squad of the De La Salle University (DLSU) can provide some answers after a video of their rally featuring their male squad members in dresses and skirts made the rounds on social media, earning the ire of the local queer community and its allies.
It all began when a video posted by @casteryuuske on TikTok was shared around and soon made its way to Twitter.
While we can’t be sure if all the performers are cis men, this kind of “comedy” only makes sense from an anitquated heteronomative perspective. Which brings us back to the question: why is someone else’s gender expression still being used as a vehicle for cheap laughs?
Several commenters, including fellow students of the university who were present at the pep rally, said they were uncomfortable at the sight of these burly men dancing flamboyantly while wearing feminine clothing in an effort to rack up laughs.
“As someone who literally enters campus wearing dresses/skirts, I felt uncomfortable during yesterday’s pep rally because my gender expression was used as a punchline for a horrible joke!” wrote Twitter user @deogelo, who identifies their pronouns as they/them in their bio.
“TBH the DLSU pep rally ruined my day [because] of the ‘crossdressing’ portion,” @migseu_, who identifies as genderqueer, tweeted. “If queer ppl were to do that, would they get the same amount of support? at the same time, in reality, those who actually express that way are hate-crimed and discriminated upon.”
“Love when cis-het men can dress all cute and girly for comedic acts, and it’s all fun and games, but when I do it, and when trans members of the community do it, we have to come to terms with being catcalled, discriminated, & being called slurs. nothing like a pep rally amiright?” @joepete_steve chimed in.
While the university’s pep squad has yet to issue any statements regarding the controversy, DLSU’s student government president Giorgina Escoto called out the performance, saying that this was not the safe and inclusive university they lobby for, and has raised the matter to the administration.