Dress Code: There’s more to it than you think


The Mirror reporter

Dress codes have been a discussion topic for as long as anyone can remember. Anything from school uniforms to loose dress codes have been debated over many times before. While dress code, to a certain extent, are necessary, internalized misogyny happens to slither its way into handbooks across the nation.

One of the most common dress code regulations is that girls should have their shoulders covered at all times threatening to make girls wear old shirts and sweatshirts if they aren’t. Sending the message that males sexualizing something as simple as shoulders, something every human on earth has and is not sexual in any way, is more important than a girls’ education. You are teaching girls that the way men view their bodies is more important than a high school education.

The worst part is when girls are told that the length of their shorts is distracting. Now of course, there is a line, but mid-thigh is not even a realistic standard. Can you name one place that sells knee length shorts for teenage girls? I can’t.

Being dress coded is humiliating and demeaning. It makes you feel worthless and that your body matters more to the school than you do. Just last year at Mr. SPASH a guy wore a sports bra for a competition and it was fine. Girls can’t even have exposed shoulders. The only difference in male/female breasts is one has more fat and the mammary glands produce milk. That’s it. The only difference. A man can strut in a sports bra but I have to wear sweatpants in 90-degree weather because my thighs might distract someone.

The dress code, as stated in the 2016-17 SPASH student handbook, says “clothing should completely cover the torso from about cleavage to approximately mid-thigh at all times.” We’ve all seen a girl get sent to the office for breaking this rule, but we’ve all also seen guys wearing cut off shirts regularly. Generally, why is the exposure of the entire male torso acceptable but even a crop on a girl is not? We need to start treating the sexes equally when it comes to following the current dress code.

Here is what needs to be changed:

  1. Girls should be able to display their shoulders
  2. Shorts shouldn’t have to be mid-thigh
  3. Midriffs should be allowed

While there is a need for a dress code, the sexism could be toned down a bit.