Please Let Me Wear My Ripped Jeans!

This morning, when I woke up and got dressed for school, I did not think what I wore would matter much, that it would get me sent to the Vice Principal’s office. Today, the VP told me to never wear my favorite pair of jeans to school anymore or I would get detention for defiance.

My jeans fit me perfectly fine. My jeans are not hanging off my waist or sagging. Nor are my jeans too short to be considered indecent exposure. My jeans cover my legs to the point where you can barely see any skin. The VP said the problem with my jeans was the hole, the size of a golf ball, slightly above my knee.

I’ve worn this pair of jeans countless times to school before this occurrence. Do my ripped jeans cause any harm to the people around me? Jeans are still jeans even if they’re ripped. I don’t see why ripped jeans are a problem. And even if they are ripped, I’m not sure what kind of disturbance they might cause.

[pullquote_right]Isn’t what I wear part of my right to express myself, like having freedom of speech?[/pullquote_right]

So why can’t I wear my ripped jeans? Isn’t what I wear part of my right to express myself, like having freedom of speech? If this is a constitutional right, then why can’t I wear my ripped jeans? It seems these days, many schools make rules about restricting anything they wish, no matter how unnecessary those rules may be.

School rules say students cannot wear “radically altered or torn clothing.” Students also cannot have “unnatural hair color” in their hair. Students are also not allowed to wear hats that aren’t school colors. Over the past few years, school rules seem to have gotten out of hand. Why make so many rules for students to break and add more hassle to a student’s life?

Is it not enough to have to stress over homework, tests, and grades that they have to create more rules to the point where students have no time to work or study because students are afraid of breaking the rules? I was sent to the VP’s office and I missed out on the first twenty minutes of class.

We students spend a lot of time at school; it’s like a second home. We might even spend more time at school than at home. At home, I can wear ripped jeans and at school, I cannot. Why is it such a big deal that when you wear ripped jeans, you get marked as defiant and sent into to the VP’s office?

I understand why it’s necessary for rules, such as the rules about sagging pants and wearing shirts that do not show your midriff. But rules that say we cannot wear ripped jeans, even if it’s just one hole in the pants, the size of a golf ball? Why is that necessary?

The kNOw Youth Media
The kNOw works to support and equip young people with the journalism and advocacy skills they need to tell their stories and the stories of their communities.

In 2006, over 25 youth began participating in weekly after-school writing workshops where they congregated in the hallway of a two-story building in West Fresno and learned the essentials of creating media and telling their stories. The group evolved over the next five years and is now proudly recognized as The kNOw Youth Media.

Through our program, we create opportunities for our youth participants, who in turn create long-term positive change in their communities. Our approach weaves youth development and youth media innovation to produce our biannual youth publication, multimedia projects, and community forums.

The kNOw began as a project of New America Media, which was the country’s first and largest national collaboration and advocate of 2000 ethnic news organizations. In 2018 The kNOw became a project of Youth Leadership Institute.

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