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Virginia State House votes to fine those showing too much underwear.

  1. Feb 9, 2005 #1
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/4249831.stm

    "The Virginia state house has voted to outlaw the trend of wearing trousers so low that underwear hangs over the top.

    Delegates said the habit, popular across the US and in other Western countries, was "coarsening" society...

    If the state senate also approves, youngsters in Virginia showing too much of their boxer shorts or G-strings could be fined $50 (£26)...

    Democrat Delegate Algie T Howell proposed the bill.

    "It's not an attack on baggy pants. It's not about Janet Jackson. It's not about Randy Moss," he said, referring to the American footballer recently fined for pretending to "moon" opposing fans.

    "To vote for this bill would be a vote for character, to uplift your community and to do something good not only for the state of Virginia, but for this entire country," he added.

    Others were similarly offended by the current trend.

    "Most of us would identify this as the coarsening of society," said Delegate John Reid, a Republican.

    "Underwear is called underwear for a reason."

    But Delegate Lionell Spruill, a Democrat, objected, calling it "a foolish bill".

    One step closer to a national dress code - thanks VA .
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 9, 2005 #2
    hey, its their state, they can do what they want with it. Skippy for them.
     
  4. Feb 9, 2005 #3

    loseyourname

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    Screw that. It isn't their state. Any state belongs to the people that live in it as much as the legislators that make laws for it. This is stupid. One generation doesn't like the dress habits of another so they outlaw it? Should they next outlaw rap music? What about bad action flicks? Jesus, and I thought the California state assembly was bad.
     
  5. Feb 9, 2005 #4

    Do you live in virginia? well thenc ongratualtions you didn't elect those congressman.

    I hate to break it to you, but not everyone shares your political views.

    Just because you didn't elect those legislators doesn't mean other people wouldn't. You have no reason to believe that such a law is not supported by their constituents.

    That said, personally, i don't think its any of the government's business, but what virginia does is virginia's business. As i said skippy for them.

    As for outlawing rap music, well....i'm very conflicted between the principle of free speech and annoyance at how bad that crap is.

    And as for the california state legislature....Can i burn the capitol down? The state legislature here is not just bad, they're essentially guilty of treason against the people of both california and the united states. BUt BUsh supports them, so its ok.
     
  6. Feb 9, 2005 #5
    If you are not from Virginia, then you really don't have a say in what goes on there, that is true, however, because the law is unconstitutional. (It will almost definately be struck down on first amendment grounds) Then the movement of Virginia has an impact on what laws are deemed constitutionally appropriate and thus do concern you.

    Regardless of weather Rap music is annoying or not, it is protected free speech. To say that you can't play rap music is no different from saying that you can't be against Bush, or that you can't write articles criticizing the U.S. Perhaps the advocacy of rap music isn't always serious, but as with anything written, there is an advocacy. To say that certain advocacies can't be made is completely unconstitutional.

    ~Lyuokdea
     
  7. Feb 9, 2005 #6
    This is wonderful...

    The good people of Virginia can sleep easily at night, secure in the knowledge that their legislators work hard to protect them from the evils of this world :rofl:
     
  8. Feb 9, 2005 #7
    Hey, wasn't one the reasons we were supposed to hate the muslims, terrorists, or whatever was because they made people dress certain ways?

    This is what I call "Democracy InAction"! :rofl:
     
  9. Feb 9, 2005 #8

    Integral

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    Given the freedom to legislate, we legislate away freedom.

    Clearly the Va legislature has to much time on their hands. I want federal legislation which places a 5yr time limit on every law. This way the various legislatures across the land will be so busy keeping the old laws in place that they will not have time for new ones. They may even have to make a choice about which ones to keep.
     
  10. Feb 9, 2005 #9

    Ivan Seeking

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    Someone once suggested that for every new law an old one must go. The idea that ignorance of the law is no excuse is beyond absurd at this point.
     
  11. Feb 9, 2005 #10

    Moonbear

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    :rofl: Oh, I'm so conflicted about this. I've dreamt of someone finally doing something to make those kids pull up their pants, but laws about fashion are going too far. There are already statutes about indecent exposure pretty much everywhere. If their bums are covered up enough that they haven't violated those laws, then who cares if they want to wear their underwear out in public? Just make sure the fly stays closed! :eek:
     
  12. Feb 9, 2005 #11

    loseyourname

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    What can I say? This strongly conflicts with my conception of the proper role of government, whether elected or otherwise. It won't affect me at any time in the near future, but it's not like I've never been to Virginia. This law does apply to anyone in the state, not just permanent residents. That said, I still wouldn't have a problem because I don't sag my pants, but even so, I can't simply dismiss an action like this and say it is the right of the elected legislature to enact such a law. I don't believe that it is their right. I don't believe that they should have any right whatsoever to legislate how a person expresses himself so long as it isn't directly harmful to another person.

    I'm actually surprised that you aren't more bothered by this than you are. I've always had the idea that, of all the posters on these forums, you are probably the one whose stated political views most closely coincide with my own.
     
  13. Feb 9, 2005 #12
    franznietzsche, while we're mostly not Virginians, seeing such arbitrary and intrusive laws being imposed on people anywhere is a frightening and disheartening thing to all Americans. Our Republic isn't supposed to allow the Majority to impose whatever inane laws they wish upon a minority, it's supposed to protect people from such things. Seeing this happening in one state means it could happen in other states.

    Jesus Christ, if you forget to wear a belt one day you could be fined for walking to the store, how abusive is that? America's supposed to be about liberty damnit! North Korea recently mandated that all citizens have 1 of 4 haircuts, we're not that bad yet, but when Congress starts Legislating FASHION they've clearly gone too far.

    A famous Virginian named Thomas Jefferson once said, "The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others." I really wonder about how many elected officials really have any respect for American principals anymore...
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2005
  14. Feb 9, 2005 #13

    russ_watters

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    Actually, no, they can't - there's not a shot in he-- of that standing up to a court challenge. The legislators are even providing the argument on which to challenge it: "Coarsening" is not "indecent" or "offensive." Those are key words that have to be the criteria for 1st Amdendment restrictions.
    Rap annoys me too - but "annoying" also isn't "indecent" or "offensive" - note, of course, when rap does get "indecent" or "offensive," it is censored. But you can't outlaw rap itself.

    I'm actually a little surprised its even gone this far (we'll see if it actually becomes law). It could not be any clearer of a 1st Amendment violation.

    And hey, while I have it, gotta take the shot:
    I can't be sure, but aren't liberals supposed to be pro freedom?
     
  15. Feb 9, 2005 #14
    I would really argue that neither Liberals nor Conservatives are for freedom these days, the Liberals want to mandate fashion laws, the conservatives come up with the PATRIOT ACT and illegally detains Americans in Guantanamo Bay without giving them due process of law. Which one of these is more of an invasion of basic rights?

    Not that the liberals wouldn't be just as bad if they actually had any power to do things on the national level, they would probably be increasing taxes up to like, 30% of your income or something like that by now. You would probably have to work to June to pay off taxes, instead of May like you do in the "fiscally disciplined" republican system. The liberals and conservatives are so close to each other today on economic issues that it is disturbing, does nobody believe in capitalism anymore?

    ~Lyuokdea
     
  16. Feb 9, 2005 #15
    Yes, and it really is shameful that this is the current state of the "Liberal" party in America. Though, as you may be aware, Republicans have done a great job of making Liberal a dirty word and forcing a good deal of Democrats into moderate Republicans.

    I wish Democrats could at least be a good minority and stand up for basic things like individual rights, instead of becoming Republicans who prefer the color blue...
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2005
  17. Feb 9, 2005 #16
    Liberals certainly DO NOT want to mandate fashion laws, that woman who proposed the bill is certainly not a Liberal. Liberals believe in individual liberties, and certainly are against people being told how to dress. That woman is a disgrace to Democrats, Liberal ideology, and frankly, a disgrace to America as a whole. To think that our elected officials are blaming problems in society on people showing their underwear instead of things like lack of eceonomic opportunity and poor education is a poor commentary on America as a whole.

    If anything, it's Conservatives are the ones who've been the ones who are angry about the "moral downfall" of our culture, due to things like rap music and people showing their underwear. You're not going to hear anyone on Air America talking about how people need to change their attire to make up for America's problems, wheras you definately will hear people like Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh lamenting that problems in our society arise and are worsened by people's choice of attire.

    Not to equate Liberalism with Air America or Conservatism with O'Reilly and Limbaugh...
     
  18. Feb 9, 2005 #17

    Janitor

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    I may have heard a couple of years back that topless is A-OK under New York law.
     
  19. Feb 9, 2005 #18

    Don't get me wrong, i'd be pissed as hell if California or congress tried to pass that. My point is, what virginia does is virginia's business. If the people of virginia aren't going to do something about it, its there own problem. Bottom line, as i mentioned, i've got far bigger issues than virginia's fashion police when it comes to political abuses of power.

    We've got a state assembly more interested in serving Mexico than its own constituents out here, that is essentially guilty of treason, lying and hiding the truth from its constituents. They hide from english speaking media while trying to pass laws that hurt legal voters and help foreign criminals, only appearing before spanish speaking media, lying to english speaking reporters who ask about those appearances.

    Yeah, rap music is "protected" by free speech, but that doesn't change the fact that i would love to see it dissappear off the face of the earth. Along with almost every other trend i'm surrounded by that causes a distinct urge to vomit.

    And wasteofo2, your spiel about liberals standing for individual liberties is a load of bull. Liberals initiatives in california: Soda tax to pay for programs to teach kids not to drink soda. SUV tax to punish people for buying SUVs. Banning of smoking in public places.

    As i've said before, this whole system is diseased, and needs to be thrown away. The federal government is far too large and expansive. The government as whole has exceeded its mandate as given in the constitution. Worse, the spirit of the American Revolution: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of happiness is dead. Liberty is dead. Fashion laws in virginia are the least of my worries.
     
  20. Feb 9, 2005 #19
    If only more females in my state would take advantage of the tremendous liberties that our generous legislature has allowed them!

    Though I doubt that's true - we have a legislature controlled solidly by Republicans and a Republican Governor who has figured out how to prevent the Legislature from legislating the state budget, so I doubt that anyone would vote to allow women to go topless for the hell of it.

    That being said, there aren't exactly many police on our beaches, and it does get awful hot during the Summer, and some females do choose to take a loose constructionist view of their 10th ammendment right that they retain all powers not delegated to the Federal government, nor reserved by the States, including the power to go topless.

    Jesus I'm such a nerd...
     
  21. Feb 9, 2005 #20

    Janitor

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    Right on, brother!
     
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