Caitlyn Jenner Halloween Costume Is Sure to Generate Controversy
This Halloween, costume shops may be offering the "Call Me Caitlyn" outfit, which is already igniting controversy among LGBT supporters. The costume is a recreation of the clothing Caitlyn Jenner wore on the cover of Vanity Fair's July issue.
Various websites have already begun selling it. Anytime Costumes has the item for $74.99, calling it unisex. Their full description:
Everyone has seen Vanity Fair's popular July cover, so you'll be easily recognized this Halloween when you dress up in the Call Me Caitlyn Unisex Adult Costume. With the items in the set, you'll be able to emulate her picture perfect look for the upcoming party this year. Included are a white padded top and matching shorts as well as a brunette wig so that you can dress as the softer side of the popular Olympian. A sash that says "call me Caitlyn" also comes with the set so that there will be no mistaking who you are dressed as this Halloween. You probably won't break any Twitter records when you wear this outfit like Caitlyn did when she first made her account, but you'll be sure to get a few laughs out of your friends and the other guests at the get together.
While the first part of that explanation is straightforward enough, the idea that the costume should "get a few laughs" may not come off too well. Jenner received a lot of support when she appeared on the cover, but also plenty of backlash. Her public transition has led to a more open dialogue about transgender women and men, but has also revealed plenty of ignorance and bigotry as well.
The fact that the model used to display the costume is a man -- with visible chest and leg hair, no less -- also won't do much to further public understanding of the issue. Men dressing in drag for Halloween is certainly nothing new, but this is a different category. A Change.org petition has begun circulating to ask for the costume to be revoked. "To make a costume out of a marginalized identity reduces that person and community to a stereotype," it says.
Spirit Halloween, a retailer that will open numerous pop-up costume shops in October, has defended their decision to sell the "Call Me Caitlyn" outfit. “Caitlyn Jenner has proven to be the most important real-life superhero of the year, and Spirit Halloween is proud to carry the costume that celebrates her,” the company's PR and marketing head, Trisha Lombardo, told the New York Daily News.