Saturday, November 17, 2007

Land of the free and all...

I don't know what you think about US teenage boys running around in baggy pants usually displaying bits and pieces of their (usually unusually tasteless) underwear (due to the pants hanging sufficiently low at their backsides). Well, for a long time in the land of the free (home of the body bag) there has been debate on rightwing 'news' outlets such as Fox about whether or not something should be done to force such teenagers to pull up their pants so to speak.
Well, our freedom loving and defending neighbours to the south of the Canadian border have decided to take drastic action. In a number of jurisdictions parents (!) can now be send to jail if their kids are found in public with sagging pants.
There are quite a few interesting questions (some serious, some not so serious) that one can ask in this context: a very basic one would be 'what's so terrible about teenagers displaying cloth other than jeans on their backsides'? What exactly is different about that type of cotton compared to other types of cotton? It seems as if in the land of the free government now determines which types of cotton you may show in public as part of your wardrobe, and which types of cotton are so 'no no' that they could get your parents into jail. And, what if a teenage kid wants his parents to get out of his way and into jail? All he needs to do is to buy a pair of loose fitting jeans, let them hang down his bum, and show off his red satin underwear (yes, the one with the disney cartoon on it :). Welcome to the land of the free in action. I wonder whether guys wearing muscle shirts in summer will be next on the jailbird list, or women displaying too much flesh for the liking of the taste police.
The whole point of youth culture has always been to protest against 'grown up', old fogies' mainstream views of the world, tastes, etc. Now this could well take your parents into jail.
Beats me... It's tempting to tell those taste police officers to get a life and get out of other people's pants.

2 comments:

  1. This sort of thing, and the outrage over Janet Jackson's metal-embellished nipple, etc., etc., do make one wonder.

    I mean, what exactly is the "freedom" that the US of A supposedly stands for? I'm all for nipple piercings, mini-skirts, silly fashions for teenagers, and the latest novel by Salman Rushdie, along with abortion rights ... and gay marriage as an interim solution until we manage to talk the state completely out of recognising some kinds of relationships, and not others, as "marriages". I'm even prepared to fight for those things up to a point (I'd much prefer that the fighting were metaphorical, and involved words and ideas rather than guns and bombs). But it's difficult to find a country that actually stands for those values. The good old US doesn't appear to.

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  2. Hey, Udo! The guy in your picture ... honestly ... zum Abschie├čen!

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