In returning to a measure of sanity the city of Ocala (in Florida) has joined most of the developed world in deciding that “saggy pants” are a (dubious) fashion choice rather than a matter for the police, rescinding a two-month-old ban that threatened a criminal record for citizens “intentionally exposing their underwear or buttocks”.
“Putting someone in jail for 60 days and fining them $500 for wearing their pants two inches below their natural waistline, wherever that is, that’s not smart justice,” said Kent Guinn, mayor of Ocala; a sentiment that some might argue was valid back in July when the ordinance was passed. It’s worth noting, in passing, that the number of arrests, police cautions & complaints from members of the public during the 2 months that the city’s very survival was threatened by hordes of saggy-panted radicals came to exactly 0, in every category.
The Ocala ordinance banned saggy pants on city property, including streets, sidewalks, parks, public pools & municipal buildings. But critics accused city officials of racial discrimination & potentially violating constitutional free speech (nobody seemed to care how much money the good citizens had pissed-away making the Ocala streets safe from persons of doubtful taste in the trouser department).
“I don’t think government should be in the business of legislating how people are dressed,” city spokeswoman Jeannine Robbins said. “We’ve got here in Ocala a lot of things the police department should be dealing with other than that.”
Mary Rich, a city councillor who had campaigned for the law for six years, calling it a matter of public decency, voted against its repeal. “You wouldn’t want your mother coming to an affair downtown at the square & having people with their pants down to their knees,” Rich said in a statement to the world’s media when the law was passed; although she has yet to issue a statement concerning its abrogation.
She’s probably hiding in a bunker & praying the rapture takes her before the saggy-trouser brigade break down the door & drag her off to sartorial damnation.