• Thu, Jul 28 2011

Is Disliking Baggy Pants Racist?

I hate baggy pants. I think they make people look like they do not understand how pants work. (Pants working = pants that stay above your hips unsopported by your hands. Pants falling down your butt = pants fail). I discriminate strongly against people who do not seem to understand pants because they do not seem to understand pants. I did not realize until today that I was a bigot.

The New York Times reported on the dress code at various clubs. They note:

the New York City Commission on Human Rights opened an investigation (still in progress) into the Continental, a sports bar in the East Village on Third Avenue, for its “no baggy jeans or bling” policy, which civil rights groups called a barely concealed ploy to keep out blacks. Trigger Smith, the owner of the Continental, denied that he was trying to exclude people of a certain race. “It just so happens that more minorities wear these” kinds of clothes, he told The New York Times in January. “There isn’t a racist bone in my body.”

So. How do you feel?

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  • Jon

    I bet he’s conveniently allergic to fried chicken and watermelon too.

  • Lauren9739

    I don’t think it’s racist, it’s a dress code. How many bars/clubs are there in NYC that don’t let girls in unless they are wearing heels? A lot. Anytime a friend of mine invites me to a bar in NYC I look up the dress code because I rather wear yoga pants and flip flops, but most places frown upon that. Most of those places also have no shorts, must where a button down shirt and no sneakers policy for guys. Not everything is racist.

  • lala_babin

    Not wanting to stare at a stranger’s ass-crack makes you normal, not racist.

    • Heidi

      To be honest, if someone found themselves unable to look away from my ass my first assumption would be the problem is with them, not my pants. “I don’t want to look at it” is a silly reason to try to dictate people’s clothing choices; wouldn’t it be easier to control your eyes than to try and control how people dress?

    • lala

      A) I said not wanting to look at it low pants doesn’t make you racist. I didn’t say people should stop wearing what they want.

      B) Using the “if you don’t like it don’t look” argument is a cop-out. This man owns the place, he makes the rules. How about the “if you don’t like the dress code, go somewhere else” argument?

    • Heidi

      Oh I agree that it’s his place and he has every right to make the rules. I just think “I don’t want to look at it” is a silly justification, since the far easier and less-likely-to-cause-problem option is to simply stop looking. He can use whatever justifications, silly or not, he wants in his own bar, though, I agree with you there.

      And you didn’t say “look”, you said “stare”. Those words have very different connotations.

  • Heidi

    Simply disliking them isn’t racist; however, a dress code which bans one specific item of clothing/style of dress that is disproportionately worn by PoC is questionable, though.

  • Cassieleigh

    I feel sick and tired that people feel compelled to ask if something is racist at all. Most things aren’t. And lala-babin, you’re correct.

  • Jamie Peck

    Disliking baggy pants is not racist. Banning people who wear them (plus bling! WTF is wrong with bling?!) from a club, however, seems a bit suspect. Maybe we should conduct an experiment with a baggy pants-ed white guy to see if it’s really the pants they care about.

  • Eileen

    Nope. Bars have dress codes. I’ve been to restaurants that require men to wear jackets and ties, and, as mentioned, to clubs that require women to wear heels. As long as it’s something that can be changed fairly easily – and most of the black people I know own clothing that is not baggy, even if they don’t choose to wear it all the time – and not something like “women must have straight hair”/”no Afros,” which implies a rejection of a naturally-occurring racial difference, I think it’s fine.

    • Jon

      “No Afros” ban would be hilarious. Politically incorrect to the extreme but hilarious.

  • Audrey

    Not racist, just normal. No one wants to see your underwear in public! I have seen people of all races wearing baggy pants and people of all races wearing, as you say, ‘pants that work.’

  • Abby

    I do believe Clueless pointed out that A) men of any and every race wear baggy bottoms AND B) no girl wants to see that, yet along date that

  • pattya

    i would like to point out that the baggy pants thing has mostly been replaced by super tight pants that hang below your ass, so technically they arent even baggy.

  • Ash

    you know what’s racist? saying “(race x) is/can’t do _____/have to _____ because of (comment)”. you know what isn’t racist? saying “ewe, look at that guy with his pants sagging. I hate it when guys deal crack”. So no, banning baggy pants is not racist because EVERY race wears them and because nobody wants to see underwear al like that.

  • Lo243

    Disliking baggy pants isn’t racist, but I know people who work at doors at clubs who are told to enforce a dress code. It isn’t really about the clothes, it’s definitely set up to keep certain types of people out. I would definitely be suspicious of a casual establishment that sets up a dress code that explicitly bans specific types of garments that might be associated with a specific group of people, whether a race or a socio economic group.

  • old_fat_and_tired

    Years ago my son was in the habit of wearing a ball cap inside out and backward….”it’s my signature” he said ……. it looked stupid……. feel the same about sagging pants and I don’t care the race of the half wearer. Oh got the boy to stop……. he was out playing with the neighbor kid and I walked outside to get the mail with a pair of tighty whiteys puled over a pair of cargo shorts …. as he screamed DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAD what are you doing? I yelled back “it’s my signature” ……. never saw him wear his hat that way again.