I like what Nancy Sims says about political fundraisers that segregate a candidate’s supporters by gender, and although I myself have been an offender, I would add age. Young professionals for candidate X, men for candidate Y – it is more about differentiating between multiple events than anything else, but the terminology is certainly worn out.
Here’s the invitation that put her over the edge.
Amusing reactions to the graphics included accusations that the fashionable clip-art figures were rather like the silhouettes on big rig mud flaps (too true!), which, when combined with the word ladies, gave the invitation the feel of a “high-end” strip club.
You’ll note that I set apart “high-end” with quotation marks. I did so to indicate an ironic use of the term, a proper use of the device.
You will also note that the invitation sets apart two phrases with quotation marks – “Ladies for Locke,” and “Meet and Greet.”
Are we to assume ironic intent here as well? Not really ladies? Drag queens for Gene? Something quite other than an innocent mix and mingle?
The bad taste police were the first to the scene, but the grammar police could not stay away. Lose the quotation marks when you do the next draft of this invitation, or risk the scorn and mockery of those who punctuate properly.