The problem with the dress code


McKayla Clark Snodgrass, Page Editor

There’s a big problem with the school dress code and the vagueness in it’s policy against racism. A common complaint one hears regarding the dress code is how it’s mainly enforced on women. My complaint isn’t what is enforced but what isn’t. There are students who can wear collars with chains attached to them as their friends pull the chain as if they’re an animal around school around school and that doesn’t violate the school dress code, but there is an issue with girls wearing crop tops.

The biggest problem and the main reason I’m writing this is that students have been allowed to wear Confederate flags on their attire without any repercussions. There is a rule in the dress code likely regarding explicitly stated racist behavior, completely ignoring the impact and history that symbols have as well. “Racially offensive material” is the exact wording in the dress code section, which could mean anything, especially to a largely white staff. That sentence allows people to pick and choose what is “racially offensive” seemingly without actual examples of what is racially offensive. 

The Confederate flag is a symbol of white supremacy. Yet, they don’t dress code individuals who wear that unless they are reported by students.

We have a rule against people showing too much “mid-section,” which is mainly enforced on women, but not against symbols of hatred. I think it’s important to reflect on how we have a rule against someone showing their stomach in their clothing, which harms no one, and not a rule explicitly against symbols of hatred, which harms many. 

My first assumption for many things going unenforced would be that it is due to laziness, but then why do girls get dress coded? My second assumption would be that they didn’t notice, but how could you miss something that is screaming for your attention? My last and only assumption I can reach is that the staff is too desensitized to, specifically in this case, the Confederate flag, and that’s an issue.

It doesn’t matter how one wears the Confederate flag, whether they wear it as a purposefully racist symbol or if they wear it as a symbol of “Southern pride,” it’s still a hate symbol and used against others on a daily basis.

The dress code directly targets female students and allows actual inappropriate attire to exist within the school building. We need to stop sexualizing minors and address the actual issues with attire: the harmful and racist things worn around the school.