by Robert Rios
Most adults will agree that some of the fashion trends worn by today’s youth are inappropriate. While every generation has criticized the younger’s style of threads, it’s now the choice of how said trends are worn that is cause for growing concern. I’m speaking about pants sagging, and how some young men and women parade the streets of the city with their pants half-way down to their knees, displaying to the world their adolescent assets.
Growing up in ‘80s and ‘90s during the infantile state of Hip-Hop, I witnessed its cultural influence on fashion and lifestyle first hand; some of it positive and some of it negative, and though not intentional, it is a backlash of the movement. We’ve all seen urban entertainers proudly strutting around with undergarments on display and flesh-clad fabric not leaving much to the imagination. While the cause of such displays may be evident to those who may have gone through the correctional system, there are those in suburban and middle-America who have no idea that they are even portraying jail gang culture by letting their pants sag down to ridiculous proportions. As the growing population of sex offenders in our neighborhoods continues to soar, parents, now more than ever, need to make sure their young ones gain a better perspective and understanding of how they are portraying themselves.
Some may argue that such bad influence on fashion choices has been inflicted upon women by the media for decades via music videos, movies and fashion magazines. However, while some skirts are too short or shirts too tight, I’ve also seen young women who choose a more masculine way of dress fall victim to the same trends. Each individual has the right to express themselves and dress how ever they feel fit, no one is judging. For obvious reasons though, concern of sexual assault and children exposing themselves on the train, walking down the street or congregating with their friends who are all dressing the same, is needed. All those perverse criminals have to do is walk outside or look out their window without ever having to approach their targets.
There have been many who share this concern and call for prevention and personal responsibility; instituting “anti-sagging” petitions, bills and school programs, and calling for harsher regulations and fines for indecent exposure. Incidents have even arisen where the violators have been placed on sex offender lists as a result of such heightened repercussions.
In every case, the goal is not to prevent kids from expressing their individuality – or lack there of. We are not aiming to be hypocritical or anti-pop culture, but there’s a line, and that line is called a waistline; and what’s below that waist should not be on display for the entire public; most certainly not at such a young age.
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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those
of the author and should not be understood to be shared by Being Latino, Inc.