Sunday, July 29, 2007

Sagging Pants - Help a parent out

This post warranted a review.

The last two days have been intense to say the least. What in a person's right mind would allow them to go against all codes of decency and self-respect to want to wear Saggy pants. Boundaries have long been set in our home, but with the Summer visitation of my teenage nephew , my son must have had a case of amnesia when he put his clothes on this morning. Not that he needed any motivation to be defiant, it just gave a little oxygen to what has been smothering underneath.

Now, let me not paint a sordid picture of my nephew, he is very respectful, sweet young man. He takes AP classes, makes good grades, is on the football team and makes friends easily. He just happens to have that teenage problem of wanting to fit in, and in today's culture that means that he "sags". Oh, he wears Tall T's to cover it up, but it's still sagging to me. I mean, why could he just not roll one pant leg up, wear different color socks or the starched Levi's, an Oxford shirt with Penny loafers, like we did- those were true fads.

I'm convinced that this sagging thing is not just a fad, but instead, it's a totally affront to modesty, parental boundaries and just plain common sense. It is so powerful that it has branded the Hip Hop sub-culture as the only "dope" dress fare for the really cool or "baaadd".

It's more than just a fad, when in just about any city you can be pulled over by the police, "profiled" for what use to based on ethnicity, but now includes clothing attire. I have done my research here. My husband and I spoke with a police officer, on their beat, with our son while we were doing some shopping. We wanted our son to know how ethnicity, one's company and dress all play together in the eyes of the law. The police shared with our son, better than we could have ever tried to, how they "spot" out possible problem situations. The precursor was almost always how they were dressed or the combination of colors they were wearing. The Tall T's (some language) that my nephew obliviously wears, and my son desires to wear are known for concealing weapons or "five finger discounted" goods. Yes, I do say , it's more than a fad.

Be it an ill thought out fashion statement, my opinion, or as claimed by manufacturers, a result "social economics", it is not what we, as parents, desire of the young in our home to wear.

So, where do we go from here? Ideally I would think mass letters, emails or phone calls would be a good start. My research has determined that they are too large to respond to letters, emails or phone calls. No, that would not work. But, if we as parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents and friends stopped giving these things as gifts or stopped allowing those that we love to buy these things we would be off to a much better start, with a greater economic impact. I feel we are as much to blame in the degrading of our young men as the manufacturers. For too long we have resigned to throwing up our hands and talking to the backsides of our young men as they walk away from our sound judgement. It has to start with us; start with code of dress for our families. We have got to set the boundaries and not cower down and allow those boundaries to erased by the culture.

Some things that may be helpful to ask your children in rhetorical questions or as interactive questions may start like this:

1. Where can you wear sagging pants after graduation?

2. Have you ever thought that someone could come and pull your pants to your ankles?

3. How do you like the stereotype that your sagging brings?; What are the stereotypes?

4. Is sagging okay if you have a tall T to cover the sagging?

5. Who do you think would be hired at a bank, Pepsi cola, Frito Lay, Walmart, Lowes, you, sagging or another boy your age, wearing fitted clothes?

6. How do feel wearing a fashion that originated as prison clothes with a definite gay connotation?

7. Did you know that you cannot enter a court room with saggy pants?

8. What gives you your self esteem? clothes, cell phone?

9. What does modesty mean to you?

10.How are you being identified?

11.When there has been a crime the perpetrator is identified by what he wore, had or physical characteristics. Do you understand what profiling is?

12. Did you know that in some cities, groups of people are profiled by the car they drive, what they have on or the activities they participate?

13. Have you ever stop to think what defines you? Is it your character , your dress, or what you own?

14.What does God want to define us?

15. In the statements, association brings about assimilation, or you are define by your peer group, both equal in meaning; What do they mean to you?


It's not a coincidence. I truly believe you were meant to be here. Thank you for spending some time with me discovering the small but important things. In this blog I share my thoughts on family, friends, trials and triumphs. You will find links and thoughts that are dear to my heart as I grow daily in being a Godly wife, mother, daughter, grand-daughter, sister, home school novice and friend.