Senator Gary Siplin of Florida greeted returning high school students this week by personally handing out leather belts. It was a reminder that the law he got passed last spring, which requires that schools adopt dress codes that ban baggy, saggy, and underwear-showing pants, was now in full effect.
“We want our kids to believe they’re going to college, and part of that is an attitude, and part of that is being dressed professionally,” Siplin, who is black and admits to wearing an afro and platform shoes in his youth, told Reuters. “I’m not going to hire anyone, white or black, with saggy pants,” he said. “I want to make sure our kids qualify.”
The first time a student is caught with baggy pants they get a verbal warning. The second time they get banned from extracurricular activities for 5 days. The third time they get an in-school suspension.
One Florida sophomore disagreed with the ban, telling Reuters, “We bought our clothes (the) way we wanted them…It doesn’t matter how you dress. You come to school to learn.”
Just this week, Green Day frontman Billie Armstrong was kicked off a Southwest Airlines flight for having pants that sagged. It was the latest in a recent string of travelers being booted from flights for wearing their pants too low.
The pendulum has swung. Social institutions and businesses are saying they don’t want to see you flashing your underwear. I say it’s about time. In this economic climate, how are we supposed to be able to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps if we can’t even pull up our pants?
Florida lawmaker hands out belts under saggy pants ban [Reuters] (Thanks to Mimbla!)
Read the full text of SB 228.