Sagging pants debate heats up

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News 12 at 6 o'clock, August 29, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga.---There's more talk about banning baggy pants in Augusta. But who would enforce such a law?

Dr. Matthew Hutcherson is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Paine College. He says yes to making sagging pants illegal in Augusta. "I'm appalled that a young man would want to walk around showing his underwear."

Identical twins DeAnthony and QuintAnthony Bateman say they don't like the look either, but say making a law against it is unnecessary. "It's foolish. We can be spending our time on more important things than sagging pants," DeAnthony said.

This comes as school administrators boast a no tolerance policy. They say not in their backyard. Student services director Elias Etinge says, "Sagging pants both for males and females...we don't accept that on campus."

Just to drive the message home, the school called in models. Their job was to show the dos and do-nots. Their attire included everything from suit and tie to sagging pants and revealing tops.

It's a big topic of debate...what's appropriate and what's not. City law enforcement says they are not looking to become fashion police.

Richmond County Sheriff Ronnie Strength says, "Getting involved in what people are wearing would take away our efforts on what we should be doing."

Augusta commissioner Joe Bowles agrees. "I just don't want to put the city in trying to dictate morality when you are gonna end up in a lawsuit and spend taxpayers money on a lawsuit that you know you are gonna end up losing."

But Dr. Hutcherson says it's worth the fight. He says, "I think if these young men understand that there will be legal repercussions, since the other avenues have not helped them to realize the seriousness of this issue, then, I think, they will begin to get their attention."

He's got the twins' attention. "It's irrelevant...I see no purpose for it," DeAnthony said.

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