Ben Shapiro and Candace Owens, two American conservative commentators with plenty of time on their hands these days, took aim at Harry Styles’ Vogue magazine cover shoot and it’s safe to say it backfired tremendously.
The pair took to Twitter – because where else would we remotely care about what either has to say – to denounce Styles as the apparent enemy number one of masculinity itself for… wearing a Gucci ballgown.
Styles, 26, is certainly in no way the first man to wear a dress, given the sheer myriad of Black and queer people who have done so before and, let’s be honest, even better. But in becoming the first man to grace American Vogue‘s front pages solo, and to do so in a dress, is nevertheless groundbreaking.
The former One Direction star also explained to the Condé Nast publication that he finds wearing clothing outside stuffy gender roles can be liberating for him. But that was apparently all it took to tick off Shapiro and Owens.
Owens branded Styles wearing the gown as an “outright attack” on western civilisation itself, er, somehow, while cobbling together a few other dog whistles such as “Marxism is being taught in our schools” and “no society […] can survive without strong men”.
Shapiro then tweeted several more paragraphs about how “The Left” is out to “feminise masculinity” and used it as an excuse to punch down trans people.
The two defenders of toxic masculinity – which studies have suggested is actually harmful to both men’s physical and mental health – quickly became subjects of ridicule on Twitter.
Jameela Jamil, Zach Braff, Olivia Wilde and Elijah Woods pointed out the obvious to Candace Owens and Ben Shapiro.
From being branded “pathetic” by Olivia Wilde to Elijah Woods schooling the duo in what masculinity actually is, it seems nobody had time for Owens and Shapiro.
Elsewhere on Twitter, men wore dresses and kilts. Many mocked the political pundits for cowering over a guy wearing a gown. Others questioned whether Shapiro himself falls into the rigid definitions of manhood that he imposes on others.