Time for the baggy pants look to go away … please


This is about so sound as old and grumpy as it gets: Wildwood is looking to ban the baggy pants look on the Boardwalk. It’s about time…

According to a story by my friend Wayne Parry of the Associated Press, Wildwood’s mayor is out to stop the baggy look via a law set to pass Wednesday night. The new law will regulate how people dress on the Boardwalk. If the law passes then there will be no more baggy pants as well as going shirtless and walking on the Boardwalk in bare feet.

Wayne’s story notes that the part of the law getting the most attention is the prohibition on pants that sag more than 3 inches below the hips, exposing either skin or underwear. Mayor Ernest Troiano said Wildwood has been inundated with complaints from tourists upon whose money the popular beach town depends for its survival.

From Wayne’s story – and here’s the link: http://bit.ly/170EuBt — “When you have good families who call you up and say, `I’ve been coming here 20 years, 30 years, 40 years and I’m not going to any longer because I’m not going to subject my children or my parents or grandparents to seeing some kid walk down the boardwalk with their butt hanging out,’ you have to do something,” he said. “I’m not one of the Fruit of the Loom underwear inspectors; I’m not one of the grapes. I don’t want to see it.”

Sorry to say I couldn’t agree more. Most of us old geezers have had our kids on the Boardwalk and really the last thing they need to see is the butt cheeks of some 16-year-old kid. I know I don’t want to see it.

Now here’s something from his story I didn’t know: Known popularly as “sagging,” the trend originated in the U.S. prison system, where inmates are not allowed to wear belts. It was popularized by hip-hop artists and embraced by youths.

The issue has cropped up in towns across the country and authorities in suburbs of New Orleans, Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit and Miami and Jacksonville, Fla., are among those who have passed laws banning the baggy pants look.

The proposed Wildwood law would set fines of $25 to $100 for a first offense and $200 for subsequent offenses. Having to do 40 hours of community service is also possible.

Of course all of the experts on the Constitution are weighing in on the subject. One law professor says the law appears to be unconstitutional. And of course ACLU chapters elsewhere in the country have denounced similar bans as unconstitutional, says the AP story.

Do matters like this ALWAYS have to become legal issues? Can’t we agree that the Boardwalk isn’t the place for the baggy look? Perhaps if the ACLU and others don’t like it, we can make the Boardwalk private, charge admission and require a dress code. Then what? C’mon, trips to the Jersey Shore for families are meant to be relaxing and not for parents to have to explain to little Johnny and Sally that the big boys are exposing their rear ends because that’s what prison inmates do. Sheesh, really?

Have a little class folks. No one is suggesting suits and ties for the Boardwalk but if I want to see a full moon, I will wait until the sun goes down…

— Andy Hachadorian

About fromtheeditorchair

I am the editor of the Daily Local News.
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4 Responses to Time for the baggy pants look to go away … please

  1. Bryan R. says:

    It becomes a legal issue when you pass a law. And sure, right now neither you nor anyone else is suggesting suits and ties. But at one point they basically were, because people wanted to ban bikinis. With your line of thinking there would be Elvis,, no rock and roll, no women in shorts, heck, no pinball machines (which were at one point banned as unsavory). Any time you have to type “this is going to sound old and grumpy” you should probably do a full stop and rethink your position.

    • Totally disagree. And anyone who thinks the saggy look is OK should trot out their grandparents or parents and ask them. Younger folks are about style — I get that. In my opinion, and only my opinion, it’s a look that isn’t about style. It’s about drawing attention to yourself. Everyone has a temperature for good taste. In this instance mine isn’t for the saggy look. And I only say it will sound “old and grumpy” because anytime someone who isn’t 18-years-old comes out against a fashion trend, they get the good old “Ah, you’re just old and grumpy.” I like loud music. What does that say about me then? I like hard rock, I even like some rap. I’m no style leader but I know what I like and what I don’t like. And I don’t like to look at a young dude’s butt. If others do, well, then that’s their thing I suppose.

  2. Joyce Hager says:

    I didn’t know that look started in the prison system. I don’t like it either, but it seems to me the police can spend their time on more important things. Just look the other way.

    • Well it’s a problem in my opinion. And really, turning the other way doesn’t help the millions of tourists many of whom are disgusted by the style. Now they shouldn’t leave the scene of a triple-homicide for a saggy pants complaint but they shouldn’t ignore this either if it becomes law.

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