Enough Already with the Crusade Against Low-Riding Pants


Following the lead of Atlanta, Florida and, bizarrely, US Airways, among others, an Indiana town is trying to ban males from wearing their pants “hanging around the buttocks,” according to WSBT.com. The NWI Times reports that in Merrillville, Indiana, officials “are proposing an ordinance that would not allow people to wear their pants more than 3 inches below the hip in public places.”

Now we have to worry about the government intruding not only into our bedrooms, but also into our closets. Forget about the egregious violation of personal liberty — perhaps more worrying is that I’ve seen how government officials dress, and I do not want them in charge of my wardrobe.

But seriously, this would be a scary arrogation of power. “Councilman Ron Widing said he is concerned the proposal could be viewed as unconstitutional,” NWI Times noted. “I don’t know how we can tell anyone how to dress,” Widing said. Governments already ban states of undress, but that seems like a more legitimate issue of public concern than the height of one’s waistband. It’s not like men’s butts are hanging out — generally it is just their underwear.

I also have another reason to oppose Merrillville’s proposal: I love the low pants look. Whenever I need a smile, I can just look around for some guy with his pants around his groin and have a nice laugh. As I have noted elsewhere, itís funny that they have to grab their pants all the time so they donít fall down. Itís funny that they canít walk normally because their pants constrict everything between their knees and their hips. And itís funny that they think this is a good look for them.

Interestingly, Merrillville is not proposing to ban miniskirts, low-cut push-up tops, high heels (which actually injure women), or other clothes that reveal nearly all the skin a woman has. Instead it has aimed at a style that shows men’s boxers. What exactly are the Indiana officials trying to accomplish? Are they afraid that seeing some plaid fabric on a man will cause the citizenry to riot, but sanguine about the sight of an arresting amount of female flesh and the maiming of women’s feet?

Whatever their motivations, I hope that Merrillville’s leaders keep their sartorial preferences to themselves and let the rest of us make our own choices, however misguided.

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Photo Credit: Malingering


Sando H.
Past Member 5 years ago

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Karl Murphy
Karl Murphy6 years ago

I don't support government involvement in deciding what we can and can't wear, but I do hate these 'sagging' pants.
It started in the prison system for some reason I forgot, but stupid kids that want to emulate the 'gangsta' lifestyle have been doing it ever since.
I always make fun of guys that I see walking around like that, a lot of them look quite embarrassed when I say something to them, and some get a little angry. I always laugh because I don't think a guy can beat me up while he struggles to hold up his pants, he can't chase me either, lol.

Winn Adams
Winn Adams6 years ago

It's silly looking and it's a fad and when I was his age we had silly looking dressing and fads and we out grew them and so will this generation. Let's focus on ending hunger, animal and child abuse and things and causes that are important.

Imani Dial
Imani Dial6 years ago

Boys that wear their pants too low look stupid. Period. However, the government does not have the right to ban people from looking stupid. Otherwise, our country might as well be run by Stacy London an Clinton Kelly from TLC's What Not To Wear. If that was the case I'd go crazy (and I'm sure I'm not the only one)!!!!

ryan b.
Ryan B7 years ago

Let it be legal. Then when I pull them down on you and you trip and crack your head open on the concrete I can't get in trouble for it. You guys who wear your pants like this are idiots. It clearly shows by your attire.

Colleen Wright
Colleen W7 years ago

I dont know ...its not always only boxers that are exposed!!!!! Heh heh - of course it ugly, that's why they like it!!!! Kids have never had any taste or sense! Ban them? Can't see how you could police somethjing like that. What about the fashion recently for girl's g-strings sticking out ...thankfully seems to have died out on its own....

Debbie L.
Debbie Lim7 years ago

I've always hated guys with low-riding pants. It's such a turnoff.

Darla Stokes
Darla Stokes7 years ago

In the words of Harry Dresden, "Let he who hath never worn parachute pants cast the first stone." My sons (age 17 & 21) were never into sagging, but I've always let them choose their own clothes. Sure, sagging pants look ridiculous, but if looking ridiculous is a crime, I think there are a LOT of fashions to indict.

Another thought: this crusade only serves to make the fashion more tenacious. Does nobody remember the 60s & 70s? Did the similar attitude about long hair on men cause the men with long hair to get it cut?

Since when does freedom of expression mean "subject to the approval of white, middle-aged males"?

Diane Y.
Diane Y7 years ago

Do you ever wonder why children of immigrants from Asia do so well in school and get good jobs when the grow up? The secet is their parents don't let them do whatever they want. They are told that they can watch only so much TV, then it's time to do homework. They are taught to respect others. The baggy pants is just a symptom of young people who have had little discipline and show little respect for others. I wish America children could "grow up" with some tough love.

Eric Lind
Eric Lind7 years ago

These pants are the number one cause of childhood obesity.... kids can't run, let alone walk in the d@#n things.