The crime, he says, is disorderly conduct or indecent exposure, both misdemeanors punishable by 93 days to a year in jail and/or fines up to $500.The chief's justification is:
On June 27, the chief issued a departmental memorandum telling officers: "This immoral self expression goes beyond freedom of expression."The new law's form will be:
Dicks, 41, broke down his interpretation of the laws as such: Pants pulled completely below the buttocks with underwear showing is disorderly conduct; saggy pants with skin of the buttocks showing is indecent exposure, and saggy pants, not completely below the buttocks, with underwear exposed results in a warning.As a rule, I'm against any laws that try to legislate 'decency.' I can see laws that prohibit genitalia exposure, maybe even underwear exposure on the grounds of a threat to the health of others. But if this new rule on pants is accepted, what will be next? Skirts and/or shorts above the knees being deemed indecent? In the same paper, Freep writer Rochelle Riley op-eds that she hopes thongs will be next.
My main point is that if the pants law can't be based on the principle of protecting the rights of citizens e.g. a health threat, it shouldn't exist. The pressure to wear pants above the hip should come from the private sector. An example of this would be a sign I saw on the door of a family owned grocery store which read, IIRC, "Pull your pants up before entering or no service." That is a proper use of private social pressure.
Some of these kids will out grow this fad as did the black chief. Others won't but all are second handed conformists. They can't wait to 'fit in' to the latest socially tolerated method of expressing their social independence or individualism.