Bad Taste Socials: Are They Acceptable?
We’ve all been on a night out in Bevois Valley and seen a fella dressed up as Bin Laden or Hitler but how far is too far? For those of […]
We’ve all been on a night out in Bevois Valley and seen a fella dressed up as Bin Laden or Hitler but how far is too far?
For those of you who are oblivious to this, a bad taste theme involves participants wearing the most politically incorrect outfit with the aim of raising as many eyebrows as possible, think Joseph Kony, the late Gary Speed or perhaps Steve Irwin and a stingray. With the recent news of UEA’s rugby team being banned for 18 months after a bad taste social at their SU and political correctness going into overdrive, where actually is the line and how easy is it to cross it?
Personally, I have no problem with any group of people who choose to get their Glitter on and I know full well that it’s just a joke, but there’s always a small group of fun sponges who see casual dressing up as worshipping the infamous criminals and psychopaths. Students who decide to hit Jesters as an army of rabble rousers (hopefully) wouldn’t dream of wearing an SS uniform to lectures or even any other time stone cold sober. I’d like to think that everyone at university has made it through life to realise that dressing up as an ex-dictator or a victim of an unfortunate event is purely just for a drunken night out without harmful intentions.
There are of course certain outfits which blatantly cross the metaphoric line; such as ones displaying outright racism. Those who dress up provoking racial hatred like Klan outfits are just asking for abuse. There’s no need to stir up sensitive issues and there are much more imaginative costumes to wear, not to mention the high chance of being lynched by anyone, regardless of ethnicity.
But is there more to a bad taste theme than just an outfit? Inappropriate dress is just a dick measuring event, a mere competition of who can produce the most offensive attire. Participants’ imaginations and sense for originality are judged by how much abuse they’d receive, that’s if they weren’t denied entry to the club beforehand. If socials with themes like this are just an ego battle then it’s hardly surprising costumes become increasingly more offensive, of course aided by people’s attitudes driven by out-of-control political correctness. Perhaps the bad taste costume ideas aren’t becoming more distasteful but the attitudes’ of people are changing, making us become more easily offended.