Stifling student expression

Celeste Lopez

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CelesteLopezShorts that are too short, shirts that are too low, and belly button rings that refuse to be covered; many of our fellow High School peers fall victim to the nit picking and scrutinizing of this self expression.

Though I too am guilty of these actions, I believe it is ok to enforce a dress code for the people that take it too far. However, what I don’t believe, and cannot understand, is why are we restricted from the supposed “vulgar” expressions in our everyday outfits if we are allowed this same expression in our sports uniforms?

The cheer shirts show off our belly button rings proudly, the volleyball shorts possess shorter length than any seen at lunch, and it is not rare to see runners practicing in spandex and a sports bra. It is hypocritical to allow this on the sports field but not in the classroom.

If this is our mandatory uniform for sports then why is it not allowed for the classroom? If we are allowed to express the freedom of lack of clothing with a pom-pom in our hand then why not with a pencil? The main excuse for this is that it is a distraction to the eyes but the same reaction from onlookers is given whether they are sitting on bleachers or the seat next to you.

Overlooking the lack of clothing during sports but not during class time is like stating that it is ok to entertain the eyes of others but only during practice, it is ok to dress with vulgarity as long as you can hit a ball, it is ok to show off your body but you have to have the skill to get on the team first. This is the message we are advocating.

I agree that if the shorts are too short and a shirt is too low that it should not be allowed because it does attract the wrong type of attention and it does enable a different perception of you to be set. It is precisely because of this belief that I find it hypocritical and frankly degrading to the sport and to the person to have this as our sports uniforms.

No matter if it is on the field or at lunch it should not be allowed for the said reasons above but if it is allowed on one of them then there is no reason it shouldn’t be allowed on the other. If you are going to tell a child at lunch that their shorts are too short then you should not give them shorts the same length as soon as practice starts.      

We should either be able to parade around in the shorts and shirts of our desire without the fear of humiliatingly being sent to the office or we should no longer state that a belly shirt helps us run faster.

Photo: Celeste Lopez gives her opinion on the hypocritical dress codes enforced at school. Photo by Trenton Pham of The Foothill Dragon Press. 


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