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Gen. Larry Platt and Cotton Cole share similar views on a much-controversial fashion statement: they don’t like baggy pants.
Platt became an instant celebrity when he performed “Pants on the ground,” for “American Idol” judges last year. Cole, a Lancaster County council member, wants council to create a countywide ban on baggy pants.
The beginning lyrics of Platt’s song goes, “Pants on the ground, Pants on the ground, Lookin’ like a fool with your pants on the ground.”
Cole says local residents don’t want to look at “heinies.” “Heinies” is a slang word for buttocks, just in case you didn’t know. And sagging pants allows plenty of opportunity to view “heinies” and underwear.
Council members allocated some discussion to a ban, but in the end took no action.
That was a wise decision. Not because we are proponents of baggy pants. But you have to be realistic. You cannot legislate what is supposedly proper attire. However, government entities across the nation have tried, including the town of Kershaw several years ago.
Trying a counter approach, several towns tried to implement programs and campaigns that encouraged wearers to pull up their pants and keep their underwear secret.
The fad of wearing pants below the waist revealing the wearer’s underwear was thought to have originated in the prison system. Inmates struggled to keep uniform pants up because they were not allowed to have belts. In the 1990s, hip-hop artists made the fad popular and the trend began.
While the style is popular with young males (black and white), it is not with many others, including the president of the United States.
Before being elected president in 2008, Barack Obama appeared on MTV and said laws banning baggy pants that expose a wearer’s underwear were a waste of time. However, the then future president did not say he was fond of the fad.
“Brothers should pull up their pants,” he said. “You are walking by your mother, your grandmother, your underwear is showing. What’s wrong with that? Come on. Some people might not want to see your underwear. I’m one of them.”
We don’t want to see their underwear either. But if council had implemented a ban, just how could it be enforced realistically? Cole had asked Sheriff Barry Faile if the Sheriff’s Office would enforce such a ban.
Faile’s answer quantifies our view.
“He (Faile) said they would enforce it when they don’t have anything else to do,” Cole said.
Hey folks, read anything lately about armed robberies, drive-by shootings and drug arrests in the county? We feel pretty confident in saying arrests for saggy pants might be a low priority.
There have always been fads: leisure suits, Beatles hair cuts, polyester hip-huggers and long-haired Hippies.
Fads do pass. Hopefully, the baggy pants will, too.