Thursday, October 04, 2007

Councilman's Logic Gets Even Saggier

A few weeks ago, I discussed the latest effort by a Dallas public official to ban saggy pants in public. And with today's development, it appears that Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway has gone off the deep end:
Combating sagging pants exposing skivvies is as important to Dallas as crime reduction and the Trinity River Corridor Project, says Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway.
Huh? Having people hike up their pants is as important as reducing crime?

OK, let's read on:
City attorneys briefed the Dallas City Council in closed session Wednesday on the legalities of such an ordinance. And Mr. Caraway, who's resurrected the issue after the council last year pooh-poohed it, says he'll conduct a news conference today at City Hall to launch a public campaign against pants that slip below waistlines.

"It's just something that's not acceptable. We'll probably seek a fine. We're not seeking jail time," said Mr. Caraway, who quickly added that he didn't expect already overburdened Dallas Police Department officers to be constantly enforcing such an ordinance.
I certainly hope not. As I've said in previous posts on the subject, getting the police involved in such enforcement would be a big waste of their time and resources.

Still, some people close to the situation think that this really does make a difference:
For Michael Davis, Mr. Caraway's appointee to Dallas' City Plan and Zoning Commission, the council must keep an open mind, because sagging pants may very well hinder one of the body's chief priorities: economic development.

"Let's say an executive has agreed to consider southern Dallas to consider sites for supermarkets, well-known national stores, etc. The first thing any retail business executive is going to want to do is tour the area," Mr. Davis said. "If you pick him or her up from the airport, get off the highway and see people showing their underwear and various body parts, you are likely to get 'no' for an answer and watch your business opportunities go down the drain."
So is this much ado about nothing, or is it really a small step toward improving society? And as I asked earlier, is it possible to legislate courtesy?

Tomorrow, I'll have a slightly different framing of the "Do clothes make the man?" question.

Better saggy pants than no pants at all? Meanwhile, an adventurous couple plans to climb 300 mountains completely naked.

Honey, we forgot the kid: A Pennsylvania couple fled their burning trailer, only to realize that they'd forgotten to get their 4-year-old son. (The boy was rescued by a firefighter.)

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