Columbus residents debate "Pants on the Ground" legislation
COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -
General Larry Platt's wish may finally be coming true. The singer asked young people on American Idol to wear their pants at their waist, and now some Georgia communities are requiring it by law.
Baggy pants is a style made popular by hip hop artists, but if people in Moultrie, Georgia are seen with pants low enough to reveal their underwear, they face a $25 fine and up to $200 for subsequent violations.
The way the legislation is written, people found guilty of this offense will have a charge of disorderly conduct or public indecency on their criminal record. An informal poll taken in the Columbus area showed opinions both for and against a similar ordinance coming to our region.
Haircutters and customers at Playboy Barber Shop said they don't like the style, but they think charging money for it may be too strict.
"I don't think there should be a law against that, but personally, I don't like low hanging pants anyway. It's just something I don't like. But fining them, no, I don't agree with that," said customer, Jimmy Dorsey.
Shawn Ware said, "It's up to the parents to instill how to dress to their children."
Others who dislike the style took a more severe approach. One woman suggested a theory for why the trend is so popular-
"Because they want to be like Lil' Wayne but they don't have the money," said Phyllis Jones, "I don't want my baby looking at nobody's butt. Because it's disrespectful to our elders. It's disrespectful to me. I'm a Christian woman. I don't want to be looking at no butt and dog-gone sure don't want my children to be looking at no butt. I think they should put them in jail."
Marcus Chunn often wears his pants low and posed a reversal of the question.
"Maybe they don't want to see certain things, but maybe I don't want to see your pants all the way up like that. How do they feel about that? How about I charge people for having their pants at their waist, maybe even above their waist. You can't tell me how to wear my clothes. I'm going to wear my clothes how I'm going to wear my clothes," said Chunn.
Opponents of the new law can rest easy because, so far, there are no plans to bring a similar one to our region. Phenix City mayor, Eddie Lowe, says the issue is not up for consideration because no one has brought any pants complaints to his attention.