Flint Police Chief locks up youngsters for saggy pants

I hate the saggy pants style. Always will. Maybe it’s generational, maybe it’s because I have no interest in seeing another man’s pants down around his knees. But I can’t stand it.

HOWEVER.

My generational disdain aside, I do believe the only thing crazier than young men walking around with their asses hanging out of their pants is to label such a questionable fashion statement as a criminal offense. Which is what Flint, Michigan’s Chief of Police David Dicks has done. And for which (he claims) he is getting mad love and support from the local community who apparently can’t stop gushing about how wonderful it is that these young (and yes, mostly black) men can now be thrown in jail for wearing their pants too low. So now, as if there aren’t already enough young black males in prison, Flint’s Chief Dicks is making the road from black male adolescence to prison that much wider and more accommodating.

Because make no mistake about it, this is all about targeting black kids. And I couldn’t care less how many churches are jumping up and down shouting hallelujah about this ruling, as if this were some form of tough love that will put young brothers on the path to righteousness. The plain and simple truth is that Dicks is wrong, and the ACLU knows it, which is why they have announced they are willing to take this thing to court just as soon as the first young butt-showing youngster shows up at their office ready to file a complaint.

IS THIS REALLY A CRIME --Photo Courtesy of Dallas Morning News, Mei-Chun Jau photographer

IS THIS REALLY A CRIME? --Photo Courtesy of Dallas Morning News, Mei-Chun Jau photographer

And if you actually think Dicks is standing on solid footing with this thing, then you need to take a stroll through (pick your favorite summer festival here) and take a glance at what some of these folks are wearing – and not wearing – to beat the heat. To say that young black men are the only ones out there wearing outrageous attire that is possibly guilty of indecent exposure is to say that it’s time for you to get a stronger prescription. Because I’m here to tell you I have had to place palm over mouth to keep recently digested food from exploding through my fingers on many more than one occasion.

The point here is that for Dicks to open this door is to open a floodgate of valid legal challenges that won’t even require that good of a lawyer to navigate successfully. It will certainly be the kind of case that will provide good entertainment value, and that will attract tons of media attention. Why? Because it is an issue easily stupid enough to rank high placement on the evening news; much higher than something that really matters. It’s a great news story in today’s news-free news environment because it provides sufficient diversion from real issues and is guaranteed to fire up the emotions, which makes for good ratings.

I can already here the indignant shouts and screams of those who say this kind of harsh, no-nonsense treatment is needed to stem potential criminal behavior in kids, because this kind of dress surely leads to a life of crime. After all, the style is said to have originated as an act of solidarity with the brothers behind bars who can’t wear belts (Of course, another interpretation has it that the brothers behind bars who wear their pants slung low are the ones who are trying to advertise their ass to an open and captive market. But hey, I wouldn’t know. I’m doing my best to stay on this other side).

Here’s the thing about that supposed connection between low pants and high crime; it is essentially the same accusation that has been made by the older generation about the younger generation for generations, and it’s never been on point. Low-slung pants may make a kid look like an idiot (to some of us adults) and an exhibitionist who doesn’t care whether or not he ever gets hired, but it takes a lot more than low-slung pants to make a kid a criminal.

In short, whatever crime the kid committed, it wasn’t the pants that made him do it.

And if a particular community is offended enough about too many exposed male butts, then there are many other ways for said offended community to deal with it. Beginning with parental involvement. I also wouldn’t be averse to schools having the right to require youngsters to keep their pants up while on school property. Private businesses have the right to enforce a “no saggy pants” policy denying service to anyone dressed in that style, same as the “No shoes, no shirt, no service” signs you’re likely to see in any number of fast food restaurants and elsewhere. Etc.

But to put a kid in jail for saggies? To put a criminal mark on his record for bad fashion choices?

Man, please.

SHAMELESS PLUG FOR MY WIFE: http://thedspotredeux.blogspot.com

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~ by Keith A. Owens on July 29, 2008.

6 Responses to “Flint Police Chief locks up youngsters for saggy pants”

  1. Amen!

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Ms. Kimba!

  3. I think the only defense we have is to arm ourselves and start combating the state with arms. They will not stop until all blacks are in captivity.

  4. That makes no sense to where baggy saggy pants, i work for the school system and i am tired of looking at what color of underwear people’s wearing everyday… I think it shows a lack of self respect.

  5. I think low slung pants makes people look moronic and I’m glad somebody finally made it illegal.

  6. Leave these kids alone. As long aS they are not raping and robbing, waering their pants too low is the least of our worry. I worry him about being beaten by the police. I worry about my grandson being killed by gang members. I worry about my grandson breaking the law and ending up in the pen. I do NOT worry about pants on the ground.

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