Re: Girls being punished for their bodies

Though Claire McElwain’s claims to “understand” the reason for school dress codes and what problems might come from them, clearly she doesn’t.
She completely took one public middle school’s dress code change out of context. The change is that wearing leggings, yoga pants, and skinny jeans will be banned on campus during school hours because they are a distraction to young male classmates.

McElwain goes on to basically say that the ban is sexist since males in middle school aren’t penalized for wearing their pants sagged to their knees.
That is completely untrue, uninformed writing.

Being that I am a female who attended a public middle school and am now a freshman in college, I completely understand the reason for this change in the dress code. At that age, bodies are changing into their more adult shapes, and boys and girls are discovering their sexuality.

When I was in eighth grade, the dress code was basic: no midriff, no thigh, no feet, and no butt for boys and girls.

Yet somehow girls found ways to still flaunt their newly sexually pleasing bodies. I am absolutely guilty of wearing tight low-cut tops with push-up bras and tight low-cut jeans. It was my way of accepting myself and getting approval from my male friends.

And the boys were and are required to wear their bottoms with a belt around their waists. I reflect on how ridiculous and immature that was often, and now still dress how I want to, but with class and respect.

Wearing leggings and yoga pants to school is unnecessary and to boys at that age, distracting. It isn’t girls’ faults that we have beautiful bodies, but it is our responsibility to dress appropriately.

The only thing I disagree with in the ban is skinny jeans, because there isn’t anything distracting about them, and they’ve been around for decades.

But to quote McElwain, “Banning any article of clothing altogether is eventually going to leave females with nothing to wear” is the exact opposite of what school administrations are doing.

They’re enforcing that all students wear more clothes than what is being
accepted now.

Taylor Cole

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