Saggy pants

The Cost of Being Fashionable

Saggy pants
Saggy pants

Everyone likes being fashionable in some way or another. But as we know, today’s fashion could be quite costly. Expensive designers, fragrances, brand names…it all adds up. Well fortunately, these days, we can get away with a fashion statement with absolutely no cost at all! Saggy pants has been with pop culture since the early 90s and people are now starting to observe. Actually, it probably has been noticed before, but now that notice is becoming adverse for many fashionistas. More and more cities are passing laws, not only making saggy pants an indecent exposure violation, but to also land you with a financial penalty.

Brunswick, Georgia is the most recent city where city commissioners plan to vote for a $25 fine for those seen sagging their pants in public. This adds to the growing list of cities like Albany, Ga., which has collected $4000 in just nine months. Last year, Lynwood, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, was passing out fines as high as $750. Next month, Dunn, N.C. will be holding a vote to decide on such fines for saggers. In Delcambre, Louisiana it’s a criminal offense where you could be fined and find yourself in jail.

So what is the appeal of this fashion habit that would end up costing you so much? We began to see sagging popularized in the early 1990s by male hip-hop artist. Television judge, Greg Mathis, says sagging originated from prison inmates. Prisoners had pants that were too big to fit comfortably but they weren’t issued belts to hold their pants up because there was fear that the belt could be used for an inmate to commit suicide. So their pants sagged. Another belief, which also hails from the correctional system, is that pants were worn low off the butt to show other prisoners that he was “available”. Whatever the origination, the idea of our youth sagging baggy jeans has even progressed to saggy tight jeans. Any style or pants type that the youth are into, sagging has been incorporated. Some may have thought it was a fad, but after twenty years it is still with us.

With the negative feedback this style has gotten from cities, to businesses, to several airlines even, we are to believe that it isn’t as popular as our newest generation has built it up to be. Several Americans have commented on how you can see someone’s underwear when they sag their pants. To their respect, they’re right, who wants to see another guy’s underwear? The connotation that goes along with saggy pants as well is that it’s followed by unfavorable activity. Yes it’s a discriminatory attitude to take, to assume that someone is perhaps up to no-good when you see them with their paints below their waist, but let’s be honest, saggers aren’t scoring job interviews, getting raises, or being taken serious by mainstream America. To this point, it’s just not morally acceptable, yet.

Not for nothin’, but indecent exposure is already against the law, apparently in the case of saggy pants it’s not as enforced. Why else is all this new legislation being created? But is anyone pointing out the double standard. The same mayors and council members that want to fine people when their pants are low enough to see underwear aren’t saying as much when an attractive female walks by with a skimpy outfit. Yes, they’re not showing their underwear (most of the time) but a guy sagging his pants is probably more covered than she would be. It would seem that a subculture is in fact being targeted because of fashion. Who’s to say it’s right or wrong? But let’s be fair and call out every time we see tight shirts, wife-beaters, side-boob, daisy-dukes, shirtless men who look a mess…should I go on?

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