Are yoga pants a threat to public decency? It might seem so after the beloved athletic wear once again made headlines - this time after a lawmaker debating public decency said the pants "should be illegal".
Yoga pants, as they are called in the US, or leggings, are a current fashion staple for women who are either into yoga or want to look athletic while running errands. They're soft and stretchy, but also form-fitting.
With the increased exposure (in more ways than one) has come increased controversy.
Montana lawmaker David "Doc" Moore received national attention this past Wednesday when he proposed a bill aimed at bolstering the state's indecent exposure laws. He was prompted after a nude bike ride in Missoula, Montana, made clear that the indecent exposure laws in the city were, well, bare.
When asked by a reporter what clothing he found indecent, Moore singled out the popular stretch trousers - and made a social media stir. (The law has been delayed for now.)
It is not the first time the clothes have faced banishment - several US schools have made yoga pants against the dress code, along with other tight-fitting women's clothing like leggings and skinny jeans. Administrators cite the clothing as distraction.
But aficionados say the gear is both comfortable and flattering - and that other people's wandering eyes should not be their problem.
"I think it's safe to say if you find a woman sexy in yoga pants, you probably will find her sexy in other items of clothing as well," says blogger Ashley Crtalic, who wrote a post defending leggings when her alma mater threatened a ban. "I don't think yoga pants are working some kind of voodoo magic on otherwise strong and secure bystanders."
And yet, yoga pants made headlines in 2013 when Lululemon, a large clothes retailer, had to recall many of its leggings because wear over time led to thinning (and subsequently awkward downward dogs).
Representative Moore has now made a statement claiming that his yoga comment was his own brand of sarcasm. And Walt Hill, who co-wrote the bill, told the BBC: "The comments were a joke to a reporter, one of those statements we make from time to time that we all now wish we hadn't made."
Reporting by Savannah Stephens
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