Navy commanders are reportedly fed up with their most elite and well trained soldiers dressing up as women when they go out drinking.
Officers fear marines dressing up as women are, ‘bringing the world famous name of the Royal Marines into disrepute’.
According to the Daily Star a senior commander is reported to have said:
The Royal Marines are an elite fighting force – not a bunch of cross-dressers.
Which seems to imply that fighting and cross dressing are mutually exclusive – I can’t imagine anything more terrifying than a huge group of men who are completely comfortable in their sexuality – and trained to kill.
Indeed the Stonewall riots in New York in 1969 saw an LGBT+ community spontaneously take on armed police officers with only purses and their own shoes and they won that fight.
You can hear an incredible account of that night on the BBC World Service.
Despite this famous example of fighting prowess from men wearing dresses the Daily Star report:
A lot of senior officers disapprove of it because they believe it makes the Marines look daft.
After doing some research cross-dressing seems to be a long tradition in the Royal Navy, although not quite as you’d expect – there are several examples of women dressing as men to join the ranks before they were officially allowed to.
One famous example is William Brown, who in 1815 was discovered to be a black woman – she had served as a seaman in the Royal Navy for more than 11 years.
The Royal Navy commanders who’ve taken issue with how people are dressed have a bit of a battle on their hands according to a serving Marine the Daily Star spoke to:
Banning women’s rig or naked bar won’t make any difference. It’s part of our esprit de corps.
Personally I can’t imagine telling a highly trained Royal Marine I’m not a fan of his outfit – don’t think it would go down very well for me.