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Saggin’ for swagger … or just going for comfort?

Photo: Kaydee Miller

By Kaydee Miller

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New fads come into high schools all the time, and keeping up with the different fashions can sometimes be difficult. But once people find something that suits their personality, they stick with it. Take the saggy pants trend, for example.

For years, guys have sagged their pants for fashion. Some people like the look while others hate it, and theories abound as to why the saggy pants trend has staying power. Some guys believe it’s fashionable, some think they look tough or cool, and other guys just want to express themselves.

“I think it’s ridiculous,” said English teacher Tricia Taylor. “And when you consider the origins of the fashion, I feel it’s offensive.” She’s referring, of course, to the theory that the phenomenon started in prison as a way for an inmate to show he was “available.”

Fashion or accident?

Some guys don’t consider saggy pants a fashion; they think of it as something that just happens. “My pants are either too big or they don’t have a drawstring to keep them up,” said senior Sam Francis.

Junior Brent Bay has a similar opinion. “Guys are just too lazy to pull them up when they fall down,” said Bay.

Although the saggy pants trend continues, some guys just don’t like this fad. “When your pants are sagged all the way down, you look like a fool,” said junior Tim Trummer.

Junior Victor Scarpelli wonders why young men have decided to sag their pants. “Maybe guys just wear colored boxers and they want people to see them,” he said.

Adults are annoyed; girls have mixed feelings

Since many teachers and administrators don’t like this trend, they also don’t understand why it’s so popular. “It seems like it would be a pain to hold your pants up when you walk, or to pull them up every other step,” said Fairmont teacher and coach Andy Aracri.

West Unit Principal Mike Nienaber also doesn’t understand it. “I think they’re trying to make a fashion statement that’s different, but they’re just copying someone else they’ve seen,” he said.

Other teachers who don’t like this look make sure their students are aware of the situation. “If their pants are well below their waist and their butt hangs out, then I ask them to pull up their pants,” said Taylor.

The girls at Fairmont have mixed feelings about this fad. Junior Sarah Moore doesn’t like the idea of guys sagging their pants. “I think it’s annoying and it makes guys look trashy,” she said.

Other girls look at this trend from another perspective. “I like it when their boxers show a little on the top, but I think it looks bad when their pants are past their butt,” said junior Libby Ganz-Sarto.

However, some guys argue with Ganz-sarto’s logic. “I sag my pants to show off my cute little butt for all the honeys out there,” said junior Chase Loges.     

Normally, guys are the culprits behind this saggy fashion, but a few girls are to blame as well. “It’s the same thing,” said East Unit Principal Hank Jackoby. “I don’t want to see underwear, bottom line.”

Are you judged by your pants?

Francis and senior Rob Shoemaker agree that sagging their pants is very comfortable. Even though comfort could be important, Central Unit Principal Andrew White believes it isn’t appropriate for the school and work environment. “It doesn’t fit our school’s handbook,” said White.

White disapproves of this fashion in the work environment, but also in his own life. “From a conservative standpoint,” he said, “I think it’s just disrespectful.”

Besides being disrespectful, Jackoby believes saggy pants set people up to be judged. “When people look professional, other people will think better things,” he said. When someone looks unprofessional, Jackoby believes it may give others the impression that the person is not as trustworthy as someone who looks sharp.

Whether good or bad, right or wrong, judging plays a role in teens’ lives every day. “People assume how you act based on how you look,” said Jackoby. “It’s not right, but that’s the way it is.”

11 Comments

11 Responses to “Saggin’ for swagger … or just going for comfort?”

  1. Paqui Toscano on February 26th, 2010 9:13 pm

    Kaydee, very nicely done! I love how you broke the story up into four parts — it made for easier reading and comprehension. The quotes were also really nicely used, and I liked how you got a mix of teachers, principals, and students — it was great seeing the issue of saggy pants from all sides of the aisle. I think the issue of sagging your pants can be looked at in numerous ways. Each student should individually make the choice on how he or she is going to look. Obviously, the more professinoal you look, as Mr. Jackoby points out, the more you’re going to be treated as an adult. Whether it’s right or wrong — that’s life. From someone who tries to dress both nicely and professionally for school, I would never sag my pants. I view Fairmont High School as my place of work, and think the nicer I dress the more confidence I’m going to have in school; that being said, I, with regard to my personal life, agree with Mr. White when he says, that it is disrespectful — but that’s my own personal opinion, and every person should be entitled to make that decision for himself. Unlike Mr. White, however, when it comes to other people, I approach this issue with a liberal mindset (as I do most things) and tend to agree with Mr. Nienaber when he justifies sagging pants if the person sagging them is trying to make a fashion statement. Even if they’re not and just jumping on the bandwagon, every student has a First Amendment right to express themself as long as they’re not being obscene or causing a signifigant disruption. Of course the term “disruption” is open to principal discretion.

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    Anna Crabill Reply:

    Haha … Of course, you bring Amendment rights into this, Paqui … I mean, they are your favorite thing. :)

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  2. Chris Babbitt on March 1st, 2010 9:21 am

    I am a senior and having my pants sagged is very comfortable, and I think it adds to my style. A little is okay, but when your whole butt is out, that’s where I draw the line.

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  3. felecia gustin on March 1st, 2010 10:13 am

    Keep them pants up or I will just have to de pants y’all.

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  4. Brooke Ferry on March 1st, 2010 10:14 am

    I think that when white guys sag their pants, it’s because they want to look cool, but in reality it just looks stupid. From experience, sagging your pants is actually comfortable.

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  5. Brittiny Burkhammer on March 2nd, 2010 10:19 am

    When guys sag their pants it’s because it’s comfortable. On white guys, it looks stupid, but on black guys, it looks gooooooood.

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  6. Ashley Skinner on March 3rd, 2010 4:56 pm

    Well, I think it is comfortable as well, but I also wear shorts under my pants (sweatpants). Yeah, it’s not professional, but I have my days when I just feel bleh and want to just throw my hair up and wear baggy pants.

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  7. Tory Dershem on March 7th, 2010 11:57 am

    No matter who you are, I think it looks trashy. Seriously? Buy a belt or something. If you walk around like that, you don’t look “hot.” You look like a buffoon who can’t buy pants in the right size. It’s called UNDERwear for a reason, boys.

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  8. Dakota Miller on March 8th, 2010 8:02 pm

    I’m much a fan of the “If it’s comfy, wear it!” crowd, and when it comes down to it, most of this fits into it. However, it’s when it gets to be where the pants are literally or almost literally falling off. Now don’t get me wrong, my pants are a bit saggy (30/34 pants are NOT easy to find), but not to the point of showing off my underwear. If it’s too big, I grab a belt … or just keep my shirt over any showage. My thoughts … “If it’s comfy, wear it, but don’t show too much off. There’s a place for everything … except clowns. Seriously, what’s up with them?”

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  9. Paige Porter on March 11th, 2010 8:55 am

    I find it to be innappropriate if guys wear their pants too low, but I do realize that some can’t help it. I understand “get a belt,” but my boyfriend is 6’4″ and he wears a belt, but because he’s super skinny, he still has to pull them up all the time. I don’t think it’s a good fashion statement because you’re not a rap artist or in a prison. I think it’s dumb. Try to keep the pants up.

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  10. Alan Cone on March 30th, 2010 9:39 am

    Wow with all of the blatant stereotyping here. “On whites it looks stupid but on blacks it looks cool.” What is up with that? Everyone should be held to the same standards, and here is the thing, sagging is unprofessional, so you go to try and find a job and then oh wait, your bum is showing, boss doesn’t like it, you are gone.

    But why the racism? I mean, are we really that sad of a school that discriminates and holds different races to different standards? Take a good look at yourself and decide if you want to show our school as racist to everyone or not.

    Although of course since we are against whites in this case it is okay right? Nice double standards Fairmont.

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The school newsmagazine of Kettering Fairmont High School.
Saggin’ for swagger … or just going for comfort?