2013-09-06 / Columnists

Slice of Life

By Beth Hanning

People often ask me if I am a liberal or a conservative. I always answer that I am neither. With some news items I have a very liberal view and on other items I am quite conservative. If you read this column often you probably can see what areas I am conservative. One issue I am conservative about is clothing.

This is probably due to the fact my mother was so strict in our attire. I was NEVER allowed to even wear pants to church. I had to wear a dress or a skirt. I am not speaking about a holiday, I mean regular Sunday mass. I still think of my mother while I get dressed for church. I feel like I am betraying her if I wear jeans and or sneakers.

The one part of dressing that has made me crazy the last few years is inappropriate tee shirts. Of course my friends know how I feel about this issue. One friend recently texted me asking me what I thought about the following phrase on a young man’s shirt: “I am not a gynecologist, but I will take a look.” I do not know about you but I found that offensive. Students from my school are very into inappropriate tees. The most common one that is seen in my school involves Mickey Mouse’s white-gloved hands. Now, you may say how is Mickey inappropriate? Well the shirts involve Mickey’s hands giving the middle finger or grabbing large breasts. Personally, I never thought of Mickey as a breast man. I would have said leg man. How is the Walt Disney Company allowing this to happen?

The new shirt that offends me is involving breast cancer. The shirts says: “Save Second Base” with a pink breast cancer ribbon underneath the slogan. I think breast cancer is very serious and I understand maybe trying to lighten the mood, but to sexualize a serious illness that has taken lives of family members and friends offends me.

Abercrombie and Fitch has probably been in the news the most regarding this subject. However, they probably see an increase in sales the day after they are profiled in the news due to the free publicity.

A young mother recently told me even The Children’s Place is starting to join the inappropriate tee game. One t-shirt claims that “I’m pretty, I don’t do homework.” I think if you purchase that shirt for your daughter, you are instilling in her the wrong values.

I am not the only one who feels this way. I have read articles about major theme parks such as Disney and Six Flags adding rules to their dress code of visitors. Some theme parks will allow you to turn your shirt inside out while others require you to purchase a new shirt. Some schools have a dress code article regarding “offensive t-shirts.” I often ask students quietly to go to the bathroom and turn their shirt inside out. Only once did a student not return and he was a troublesome student but he never wore the shirt again.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this issue. Email me at beth81772@aol or sent me a tweet at BethHanning2.

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