Now a days in society, usually seen among the younger crowd in places like Boston, Ocala and Miami, many boys are seen wearing their pants around their bottoms instead of having them up where they should be. Some boys, as well as men and even girls, wear their pants so low that the daily public receives a full view of that person’s underwear.
Those that take part in this trend are often seen having to hold up their sagging pants with one hand or actually have a belt strung through the loopholes with the pants positioned around the wearer’s thighs. Added to this are the long t-shirts that many wear in order to somehow cover up their revealed underpants or bare buttocks. However, in Ocala there now is a law in place that results in a high cost for wearing one’s pants down low. This law may cause those with their bottoms on full display in the Florida town to rethink their fashion statement before moving about in public areas.
The new law states that it is prohibited for anyone to wear their pants more than two inches below the natural waistline that showcases even the slightest bit of underwear or bare bottom. If caught breaking the law a person can receive up to a $500 dollar fine and/or six months in jail, the maximum sentence given for a misdemeanor. The vote was passed Tuesday with a 4-0 count. This is not the first time, however, that Ocala’s has tried to charge a high cost for wearing one’s pants down low.
In 2009 the vote for a similar law went sour when no one on the city council gave it a second motion. One council member, Mary Rich, was said to have expressed concern about the ordinance, saying that it had the potential to lead to profiling and singling out one set of people. She then went on to say that it did not matter what color they were, nor the gender, since all races and both genders were participating in the trend. Instating a penalty for the wearing of one’s pants down low was reconsidered, and the ordinance passed the second time around. This Florida town is not the only one to have this ban up against pants down low. Rivera Beach tried their hand at the ordinance, but it did not pass due to mandating pants waistband levels being considered unconstitutional. Cocoa Beach went to pass this law as well but it was repealed by the council.
Ocala’s high cost for anyone wearing their low pants appears to be working, according to Timothy Holmes, the city commissioner. Some comments about the law on social media sites such as Facebook have stated that the law should not have been needed in order for people to “dress properly.” Some feel as though the law is going overboard and that it is not needed at all. Others, however, appear to like the ordinance, saying that it was about time something like this was set into place. Many other places may come to the decision that this law is warranted in their cities as well.
By Isis E. Stevens