Halloween is pretty much the only time you can wear something absolutely ridiculous without judgment. Maybe there’s someone out there who wants to dress up as a giant lobster everyday. If you’re that person, keep doin’ you 'cause you're bold as hell. The rest of us are probably going to stick to wearing something of that caliber on October 31st only. So why is there a Caitlyn Jenner costume in the same “humorous” section also featuring the aforementioned lobster suit?
The costume includes a wig made to look like Jenner’s hair, an outfit imitating the one she wore on the cover of Vanity Fair, and a “Call Me Caitlyn” sash.
“To make a costume out of a marginalized identity reduces that person and community to a stereotype for privileged people to abuse. In this case, if you follow through with production of a Caitlyn Jenner costume, cisgender people will purchase it to make fun of her and our community,” said Addison Rose Vincent, who created the petition.
The company responded to the outcry saying:
“At Spirit Halloween, we create a wide range of costumes that are often based upon celebrities, public figures, heroes and superheroes. We feel that Caitlyn Jenner is all of the above and that she should be celebrated. The Caitlyn Jenner costume reflects just that."
The costume is sold out on Wholesale Halloween Costumes. I highly doubt many of the people who bought it are planning to dress up as Caitlyn Jenner out of respect and admiration. As Addison explained, "if your intent was truly to celebrate our community by having a costume of trans hero, you should have seriously considered trailblazers from Stonewall such as Miss Major, Marsha P. Johnson, or Sylvia Rivera, but with your record of problematic costumes it seems best to avoid turning anyone in our community into a costume for your own profit.”
“Do not turn Caitlyn Jenner into a costume,” she concludes, “your profit will only lead to greater transphobia and marginalization of an already at-risk community.”
So if you're thinking of being that person – the one who thinks transgender people are a joke this Halloween – buy the lobster costume and try to be a better human instead.
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Katie is a writer from and based in NYC. She enjoys discovering new bands to listen to, reading, and Googling "baby animals in party hats." You can find her having a political debate with her dog or on Instagram.