While I have overcome my fear of leggings, I do wonder when it was decided that a pair of leggings is just as good as a pair of jeans or pants (or even shorts, for that matter).
It's not unusual to see women substituting real pants with this flimsy piece of clothing - which is just a form of hosiery after all. This has some unfortunate side affects (or should that be side effects?). I followed one girl down the street this morning wondering if she realised that her hip length top had ridden up at the back over the waist band of her leggings-worn-as-pants. I'm sure that this wasn't the look she was aiming for when she got dressed this morning.
I'm not talking about people who are obviously dressed for the gym or have just returned from a run, or even the wearing of leggings under a mid-thigh length dress/top. It's using leggings as streetwear, with a much shorter top, and nothing between one's footless tights and the general population. Invariably, it's accompanied by some surreptitious pulling down of one's top, to make it look at least you've gone for the mid-thigh length dress/top with leggings ensemble.
It's a social phenomenon that the good women at Go Fug Yourself are truly concerned about; just look at their commentary on Lindsay Lohan.
Unlike the GFY girls (and as much as I agree with their LiLoh stance), I do think leggings have a place in a layered look, and then only if they hit your leg at its slimmest part. You just have to proceed with caution. And please wear a dress or a skirt with them.