Saggy pants a low point, but a crime?

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The campaign against that unattractive saggy pants fashion fad has made its way to Augusta.

The campaign is as gaudy and ill-advised as the fashion itself.

Augusta Commissioner Corey Johnson is proposing to amend the city's indecency law to ban pants being worn so low that they expose any part of the male buttocks. He hopes that will differentiate it from other cities' ordinances that try to define a limit on how low pants can be worn before they are in violation, or that charge a violation if the male's underwear is visible.

Those kinds of "dress codes" have drawn fire from the American Civil Liberties Union and other civil rights groups, and for good reason: They're blatantly unconstitutional.

But Johnson says, "I'm not trying to infringe on anybody's rights; I just want young people to think about what they're doing."

We're in full sympathy with him on that, but the ban on buttocks exposure should already be covered by the indecency ordinance. And a saggy pants ban could only confuse the issue. Would it lead to a ban on women wearing bikinis? And what would it mean for the refrigerator repair or heating and air sector?

Simply put, the city shouldn't try to define how people may wear their pants.

To that extent, the ACLU is right. Where civil rights groups go off the track, though, is when they charge that ordinances against saggy pants are racist because they're targeted at young black males. Johnson, an African-American, puts the lie to that.

Moreover, white males can also be seen wearing tastelessly low belt lines.

Adult African-Americans are obviously not "racist"; they're troubled by the ugly message that young males send with pants down around their knees. Saggy pants simply do not portend a bright future for youths of any ethnic origin.

Consider their origin: Saggy pants, inexplicably popularized by hip hop artists, are the result of prison inmates in loose clothing being denied belts, ropes and the like because they pose a strangulation threat to themselves or others.

Convicts are the biggest losers in the world. Why would anyone want to imitate them? And anyone who does imitate ought to be humiliated, not held up as a fashion icon. This is the lesson that schools, parents and mentors ought to be hammering into young people who wear saggy britches.

Commissioner Johnson agrees, suggesting Richmond County Schools ought to devote some time to teaching dress etiquette - and, we would add, common sense.

Saggy pants are definitely a new low in this society. But hardly a crime.

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patriciathomas
42
Points
patriciathomas 11/28/08 - 05:30 am
0
1
Of course it's not a crime.

Of course it's not a crime. What a silly subject to even come up. Does this represent the depth of Commissioner Johnson's thinking? Is this what he was elected for? Fashion police? Society has, and will continue, to decide fashion for both the long term and short term. It's all part of the defining moments of history. Could we possibly get someone with a sense of reality to replace Johnson? And can the editorial staff stop encouraging this dufus by rehashing this non-subject?

I4PUTT
5
Points
I4PUTT 11/28/08 - 06:24 am
1
0
Saggy pants are a symptom of

Saggy pants are a symptom of poor parenting. Most kids who wear them are not paying for these clothes. Unfortunately many parents have bought into this no respect for others. When moms & dads join in with their children and call their friends & loved ones hos & biatches, condone the wearing of this suggestive attire, buy their daughters pants cut so low their butt crack & more is exposed, what does one expect? While this is not a crime, it certainly is an indictment of the lack of morals of the parent. This is not to be legislated. If parents values are such, we can only imagine what is to come.

JimCox
7
Points
JimCox 11/28/08 - 08:17 am
0
0
I wish Johnson would be as

I wish Johnson would be as concerned with the budget as he seems to be with anit-crack legislation.

ishefa
0
Points
ishefa 11/28/08 - 08:33 am
0
0
I agree, that saggy pants are

I agree, that saggy pants are not only an act of public indecency; it is also a health/sanitation hazard to others. Esthetically, it is unattractive and also obscene. As an African-American, I too am embarrassed with the glorification of prison culture that many parents are allowing young black males to perpetuate. However, politically, I also understand it as a passive-aggressive reaction and act of social defiance against the unchecked proliferation of an unjust for-profit, prison industrial complex system, in which our youth are being aggressively channeled. Their protest is no different from the young white youth of the 60s who openly displayed their angst against their mundane, hypocritical middleclass existence by sporting dirty, holey pants, public displays of sex, drugs, long matted hair and open parental rebellion. I simply do not know what can be done to temper or control what I find personally offensive and insulting attire. However, this matter pales in comparison to seeking a viable solution to it s actual breeding ground, which is the horrendous problem of incarcerating disproportionate numbers of black males for victimless crimes such as drugs.

christian134
1
Points
christian134 11/28/08 - 08:51 am
0
0
Johnson keep up the good

Johnson keep up the good work...The dress code is offensive but so are the women that wear pants so tight that a person could actually count the number of cellulite pockets on their behinds coupled with the look of a pair of thongs riding high on the "waist" as well as showing the string of material running down towards the rear...This is offensive...Another example of indecency and race would have to be the woman who went out in public with a sweater cut down in the front from top to the waist as well as in the back with nothing under it...All was hanging out and she was heavy as well which gave the look that much more of a disgusting look...We all looked but not one of us commented or complained to the officials because we would have been considered racist and that should no be....The idea that she as well as the others who happen to be black should not enter the picture but it will continue to be the cop-out when it comes to dealing with the issue of what is considered decent...Race should not dictate what is decent and what is not...Personally if find having to look at another upper and lower body parts is a direct path to "throw-up" time...

JesusIsComing
2
Points
JesusIsComing 11/28/08 - 08:52 am
0
0
If exposing underwear fad

If exposing underwear fad started with poor white kids - the law would have been on the books the next day! The reason that exposure laws are not enforced with young black kids is called fear of being labeled a racist. It is the opposite of racism - its a white thing, you wouldn't understand.

DEVGRU
0
Points
DEVGRU 11/28/08 - 09:48 am
0
0
I think there are better

I think there are better things for the commission to do. I guess this is along the lines of the commission not wanting mentally retarded citizens living in private neighborhoods. Dumb thinking by dumb people.

kiddspur
2
Points
kiddspur 11/28/08 - 10:11 am
0
0
Still say the saggy britches

Still say the saggy britches makes it look like someone crapped in them and need to get somewhere to changed the manure out of them -- on the other hand having worked in the prison system the baggypants was an advertisement for anal sex.

WW1949
19
Points
WW1949 11/28/08 - 10:13 am
0
0
Let them look like the

Let them look like the uneducated that they are. They will pay for that look in the non-employment line of which most are currantly members.

WW1949
19
Points
WW1949 11/28/08 - 10:18 am
0
0
Ishefa, If you think drugs

Ishefa, If you think drugs are a victimless crime then you are not living in the real world. They steal anything for a dollar, turn tricks while infected with aids, herpes, and the like, worry families to death, over burden the prison system and usually end of dead from the drugs. Get your head out of the sand.

ishefa
0
Points
ishefa 11/28/08 - 10:56 am
0
0
WW1949 you are speaking of

WW1949 you are speaking of the consequences of drug use. When this occurs, it is no longer a victimless crime. However, when millions of youth are being channeled into the prison industrial complex for simple possession of drugs, then it remains a victimless crime. These young black male are also meted out harsher sentencing as oppose to a white youth who possesses or sell methamphetamines. That distinction is important, because it is those youth that make-up the bulk of the prison population of victimless crimes. I am very aware of what is going-on.

ishefa
0
Points
ishefa 11/28/08 - 11:09 am
0
0
JesusIsComing, white women

JesusIsComing, white women and men expose themselves everyday in the media. All of the porn channels are dominated by white men and women dressing obscenely and engaging in bizarre and indecent sex before our eyes. Young white girls "going wild" market their gaudy obscene dress, and immature sex in videos. The bulk of the sexual magazines are featured by white women. There are no laws yet being made to stop this public media-wide obscenity. It is not race that is the issue, but rather what constitutes "free speech" and "decency" and who decides.

justus4
99
Points
justus4 11/28/08 - 11:12 am
0
0
Two things: First, Johnson
Unpublished

Two things: First, Johnson will be attacked for offering such a "blatant unconstitutional" approach to a preceived, societal issue, where racial wedge tactics can be employed. His idea is OK, but it's not what young black men need to address their primary problem; a good role model. Second, this notion that a minority offering a solution to a majority, minority problem can not be anti-Black is completely wrong. For example, Clearance Thomas do not have African-Americans interests in mind when ruling on the Court. In fact, as a rule, when some whites support a minority, most times they are against African-Americans--while they themselves are people of color.

UncleBill
6
Points
UncleBill 11/28/08 - 11:30 am
0
0
The school and the home are

The school and the home are places to have dress codes for minors. Letting children go to school with inappropriate attire is a clear sign of bad judgment or neglect on the part of parents. It is beyond the purview of the government to set dress codes for private citizens (except for truly indecent exposure, whatever that is now), no matter how tackie, or inappropriate their dress may be. The county needs to apply their time and energy on something that might actually do some good and not waste money on litigation which will surely result.

55 F-100
1
Points
55 F-100 11/28/08 - 11:32 am
0
0
I applaud Corey Johnson for

I applaud Corey Johnson for his attention to this visual insult to Americn society. Thugs of all races are gulity of assaulting us with these lewd, vulgar displays of their nasty drawers being clearly visible, and their pants' waistband being somewhere between their rectum and their knees. Caucasians, blacks, hispanics, orientals, Arabs, etc. have representatives engaged in this disgusting practice. Mr. Johnson, be aggressive in your effort! In the meantime, I personally adopted a policy about six months ago of approaching these little thug knuckledraggers, and instructing them to pull up their pants so that their pants' waistband is actually at their body's waist. My instructions have elicited looks of amazement, disgust, and even fear from the cretins. However, I do not let them walk away until they correct their "fashion statement". I've even had some youths threaten to "go and tell their parent(s)" about my instructions, and their unhappy compliance, to which I simply responded---Make my day! Believe me, all it takes to achieve compliance is to make them understand that your are not asking them to do anything more than show respect for the rest of society.

grouse
1635
Points
grouse 11/28/08 - 11:34 am
0
0
Every generation of young
Unpublished

Every generation of young people has had its "uniform." It will go away eventually.

FallingLeaves
27
Points
FallingLeaves 11/28/08 - 11:47 am
0
0
Okay, so I can run around

Okay, so I can run around with my shirts lowered to below my bra underneath my breasts? I'm not going to get charged with indecent exposure? I don't want to see men's pants under their bottoms so that their underwear is exposed anymore than the above description. What a backwards society. People get all hung up about women breastfeeding their babies in public, which is a perfectly normal thing to do, but object to those who don't want to see men's thin boxer shorts, which has no good purpose. I'd rather be around self-respecting women breastfeeding their babies, a productive activity that's good for baby, mom, and family, than lowered britches, which make at least an impression of non-productivity and disrespect for self and others. Try to do anything productive when you have to hold your pants up to move around. I don't like the feeling of being visually assaulted when I am subjected to the sight of men running around with their pants lower than their butts with only a thin boxer showing that might let the horse out of the barn with any wrong move. That is indecent exposure and that is a crime.

disssman
6
Points
disssman 11/28/08 - 12:00 pm
0
0
Why not just enforce the laws

Why not just enforce the laws on the books now? baboom baboom baboom baboom baboom baboom baboom baboom. I guess you get my meaning. We have too many feel good laws already that are not enforced because of Political Correctness. I would venture to say that the noisy speeding idiots running the neighborhoods are in fact the ones with their butts hanging out. Hit them with some fines, that are enforceable, and they probably would be jolted back into reality.

jack
10
Points
jack 11/28/08 - 12:10 pm
0
0
Don't you people at the AC

Don't you people at the AC read your own polls? You ran one on whether we suported this ordnance or not and the vast majority supported it. We just don't like looking at nasty drawers and butt cracks.

Farful
7
Points
Farful 11/28/08 - 12:11 pm
0
0
come to the party Corey.

come to the party Corey. there are many important issues to tackle.

tonytonytony
0
Points
tonytonytony 11/28/08 - 12:12 pm
0
0
I think they can wear their

I think they can wear their baggys as long as they wear a sign that they are gay, ready, and can drop their baggys real fast.Thats what it means in prison, if all that wear them are the gays to advertise i think its ok, so the next one you see tell him you know he is gay and trolling.

jack
10
Points
jack 11/28/08 - 12:15 pm
0
0
ishefa, drugs are not a

ishefa, drugs are not a victimless crime, that is why druggies and dealers are in jail. The fact that most are black males is because those black males are the majority of culprits. You commit the crime, you do the time, regardless of race.

GR-10
0
Points
GR-10 11/28/08 - 12:19 pm
0
0
I live across the street from

I live across the street from a middle school. Saggy Baggy pants are the style. One day a young man left the school dropped his saggy baggies past his hips. He had on a red thong. His butt cheeks showed. Another day, my teenage granddaughter went outside to get the mail. I was on the porch watching, a young man, walking away from the school, dropped his pants and showed his butt. She had already turned away and walking back to the front door and didn't see him. Now, both these extremes were offensive. If I had my camera, I would have taken the red thong butt cheek exposed's picture, followed him home and showed his mama how he walked home from school. I didn't think he would walk into his house with his [filtered word] showing. So young man with the red thong, I now sit outside with my camera, waiting for you. And young man with the dropped pants, I am outside with a camera, and I will call the police and have you both arrested if you do it again.

mable8
2
Points
mable8 11/28/08 - 12:33 pm
0
0
The retail and food

The retail and food establishments have a sign that reads "No shoes, No shirt, No service" should add: "No saggy pants" to the short list of 'No's'. It is totally DISGUSTING for someone, whether male or female, to enter a business with their personal parts showing. As for the public indecency laws, why aren't they being enforced? Because some thing like this is not considered to be a serious violation; well, endangering my health with your unwiped behinds may cause an outbreak of e-coli. Therefore, saggy pants, it is a serious crime and you should be arrested, fined, and/or jailed.

reader54
174
Points
reader54 11/28/08 - 12:56 pm
0
0
Fashion police? Great

Fashion police? Great priority!!

FallingLeaves
27
Points
FallingLeaves 11/28/08 - 01:03 pm
0
0
It's not fashion. It's

It's not fashion. It's indecent exposure.

FallingLeaves
27
Points
FallingLeaves 11/28/08 - 01:09 pm
0
0
As far as the noise goes, my

As far as the noise goes, my brother just came back from a densely populated state in the Northwest and didn't once hear the booming bass we are being tortured with here. If they can enforce their noise ordinances, with good results, why are we having such a problem here? Savannah cracked down on it, too, and the quality of life has improved greatly. Property owners (not the absentee landlords), want to have a good quality of life and are not going to pay to live somewhere there is crime, vulgar habits like dropped pants, and loud bass booming 24/7. Either enforce the ordinances, open your eyes and close your handcuffs to crime and get rid of vulgar eyesores like sagging pants under boxer bottoms or you lose people who actually pay property taxes.

reader54
174
Points
reader54 11/28/08 - 02:40 pm
0
0
Baroness: What do you call

Baroness: What do you call thongs on the beach? Do you find underwear indecent exposure? Yeah, let the police spend their time measuring droopy waistbans! That'll be a big morale booster:)

toppergem
125
Points
toppergem 11/28/08 - 04:55 pm
0
0
Cory, there ae already an

Cory, there ae already an indecency laws on the books that cover exposing body parts...just have the police department enforce those laws. When you start amending shere and there because of someone else's whim...that is when things get out of control. Who gets to decide what if offensive and what needs to regulated by the law? Baggy pants today, mini skirts, long hair and sideburns in the 1970', jeans and white -tshirts in the 1950's...every generation has something that people find offensive. But, just like those things of our youth fell by the way side...baggy pants will soon be a thing of the past also...fining people and putting people in jail because of baggy, saggy pants is just ridiculous! There are so many more pressing things in our neighborhoods to be concerned about. Mr. Johnson, find something else to devote your time and energies toward.

GnipGnop
11754
Points
GnipGnop 11/28/08 - 05:35 pm
0
0
It's indecent when I can see

It's indecent when I can see the crack of someone's butt. There doesn't have to be a guideline for that. Any employer that finds an employee wearing their pants so low you can see their underwear should fire them. We the consumer should ask for and complain to any manager of any business that allows this kind of dress from their employees. Money speaks louder than new laws!!

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