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Old 10-27-2007, 04:59 PM   #61
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Thanks!

I like her dress - very cute.
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Old 10-27-2007, 11:25 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally posted by Moonlit_Angel
I just find it really strange that the exact same generation that asked to be able to allow guys to wear their hair long or girls to wear pants or whatever else is now sitting here supporting school uniforms.
That would mean people born in the late 1940s/early 1950s though, and there's not too many around here.
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Originally posted by dazzlingamy
i think you're hearing conformity and you're having vietnam, fight the man flashbacks.
That's probably overstating things a bit, but I was surprised by the intensity of resistance to the idea too. None of the schools I went to had uniforms and I never wished for them; on the other hand, I can't imagine I would've had a problem with them. I'm not inclined to buy the idea that they'd function as fantastic social levellers and abolish cliqueishness and hierarchy heartaches, but I'm not inclined to buy the idea that they'd cruelly stifle self-expression and leave artsy or politically restive kids psychically scarred, either. The strongest argument in favor of them, I think, is the one several have already mentioned, i.e. the economic argument.
Quote:
Originally posted by MrsSpringsteen
Yes uniforms might help in school as a short term solution to this bullying, but what about the larger question of the values these kids are learning? Are uniforms going to stop them from worshiping designer names and just things in general and somehow connecting that to their self esteem and self worth? Because there are adults who have the same values. Did they grow up with those values or did they acquire them when they became adults?
Trying to think in terms of precedents here...I'm not sure what age you are, but I can recall, from when I was roughly the age of the kids in the article, several instances of fashion trends that seemed similarly all-encompassing. For example, for both girls and boys, there was Izod shirts with the collar pulled up, and for girls only, legwarmers. Now very few kids where I went to school could afford either of those, and you probably had to shop in Memphis or Jackson to find them, but for those who could afford them, well they wore Izod shirts and color-coordinated legwarmers every day. High school seemed a little more diversified fashionwise, but there was clearly only a pretty small range of styles that were 'in' at any given time, and those who could afford it wouldn't have been caught dead in anything but. (In general their parents tended to be notably 'well-heeled' types too, if not to quite that degree--adults aren't usually quite as anxious about visually 'making the grade' as kids, especially girls, are, and are less likely to fixate on one 'must-have' way to get there.) I never personally felt bad that I wasn't one of those kids (though I would've liked to have had more and nicer clothes than I did), but I don't really have any reason to think they were somehow irreversibly morally or psychologically compromised by passing through that stage--only that their parents spent more money on clothes than was necessary for them to look suitably prepared for the occasion. I suppose you could call that a 'values' issue, but it's not really my place to tell other parents how to budget for their kids' clothing needs and wants.

As far as the peer pressure and bullying issues involved, I have to admit I'm pretty cynical about that--I just don't think you're ever going to be able to prevent jockeying for social status and all the crap that comes with it among teenagers. No one's kids are going to be immune to that. The best you can do is provide a solid foundation in showing them the most important social priorities in life (community, courtesy, considerateness, reaching out to those in need, refraining from gossip, respecting all the different forms human potential comes in, finding what your own knacks for helping others are and cultivating those etc.), keep up with their changing ideas and experiences of those in a way that reflects the same, and keep hoping for the best. They're going to have their blind spots and their bad experiences, as we all did and do--it's a work in progress.
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Old 10-27-2007, 11:43 PM   #63
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We had a sitdown strike to change our dress code. Surprisingly it worked.
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Old 10-28-2007, 01:17 AM   #64
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Quote:
Originally posted by bonosgirl84


Why in the world would I ever want to "teach" such a thing to my high school age daughter? She wears Hollister from head to toe and was just voted Freshman Homecoming Princess. Being popular doesn't always make someone a bad person.
Of course it doesn't mean someone is a bad person, im talking about the popular girls because they're up for anything type of person, which im sure you're daughter is not - but they are looked up too because they're confident, the boys love them, and people want to be them.

Its teaching your children if they are popular to not turn into some mega bitch horrible person, or if they're not, there is no reason to be popluar, if you're goig to change who you are for wrose.
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Old 10-28-2007, 02:28 PM   #65
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I think uniforms level the playing field, so to speak. I'm all for individuality and self-expression, but seriously, many kids do not have the luxury (as in, they literally cannot afford) to express themselves with clothing the way others do. For those who are against uniforms, how then do you make a fair way for every child to express him or herself? Give them a stipend for school clothes?
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Old 10-28-2007, 08:01 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally posted by Liesje
I think uniforms level the playing field, so to speak. I'm all for individuality and self-expression, but seriously, many kids do not have the luxury (as in, they literally cannot afford) to express themselves with clothing the way others do. For those who are against uniforms, how then do you make a fair way for every child to express him or herself? Give them a stipend for school clothes?
Who says you have to be able to afford certain clothing in order to be an individual and express yourself? There are kids who will take their hand-me-downs and stuff they find at thrift stores and whatnot and sew things onto them or decorate them in some way or cut them up to make something neat. Some kids put together interesting combinations of whatever clothes they own-my sister did that all the time. There's lots of ways a kid can express themselves, be they rich or poor.

Angela
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Old 10-28-2007, 08:29 PM   #67
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Right, but I don't remember any of the poorer kids in high school being glad they had to wear hand-me-downs or old clothes. Most of the people I knew that would be all for "freedom of expression" were from families that never thought twice about where their clothes were coming from or what it cost to get them. Some of the artsy people loved thrift store and vintage shopping, but again, their parents were giving them allowances or buying them whatever they wanted anyway, so expressing themselves was a luxury. I always wanted to be really preppy (not preppy as in pop-culture A&F, but I loved really classic stuff like pastel cashmere cardigans, wool jackets, and straight-legged corduroy pants) but no WAY could I ever afford that kind of stuff in high school. So for anyone who saw clothes as a means of expression, they would have got the totally wrong idea about me!
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Old 10-28-2007, 08:29 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally posted by Moonlit_Angel


Who says you have to be able to afford certain clothing in order to be an individual and express yourself?
Who says you need something other than a uniform to be an individual and express yourself?
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Old 10-28-2007, 09:08 PM   #69
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I agree, you can find other outlets even with a uniform on. But I still don't like the idea of uniforms. Mainly moreso for the reasons I've already stated in this thread, though-it's just a band-aid on bigger problems.

That said, creativity comes in different ways. Some do it through art, some through writing, and some like to use clothes as a means to be inventive (and not every kid who wants to express themselves through their clothing winds up in the whole, "I'm expressing myself by looking like everyone else" mentality). You can't really do a whole lot to spruce up a uniform.

Quote:
Originally posted by Liesje
Right, but I don't remember any of the poorer kids in high school being glad they had to wear hand-me-downs or old clothes.
I wore a lot of hand-me-downs and old clothes in school, and got made fun of for it, sure, but I still never minded wearing them. I rather felt bad for the kids who thought that hand-me-downs or old clothing were automatically bad things, actually.

Quote:
Originally posted by Liesje
Most of the people I knew that would be all for "freedom of expression" were from families that never thought twice about where their clothes were coming from or what it cost to get them. Some of the artsy people loved thrift store and vintage shopping, but again, their parents were giving them allowances or buying them whatever they wanted anyway, so expressing themselves was a luxury.
That wasn't always the case where I lived. Again, my sister wore a lot of old clothes and hand-me-downs as well, and she still found ways to make it all look neat. I think you have a point, that certainly is true of some areas, but it wasn't always the case where I lived.

Quote:
Originally posted by Liesje
I always wanted to be really preppy (not preppy as in pop-culture A&F, but I loved really classic stuff like pastel cashmere cardigans, wool jackets, and straight-legged corduroy pants) but no WAY could I ever afford that kind of stuff in high school. So for anyone who saw clothes as a means of expression, they would have got the totally wrong idea about me!
Well, then that's their problem to deal with, not yours.

Angela
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Old 10-29-2007, 11:31 AM   #70
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As I said before, I'm not entirely opposed to uniforms, it just uniforms like that I wouldn't be comfortable with:


Mainly, because I don't like wearing such clothing (and I found other ways to dress myself appropriately) and I think especially for kids in elementary who also like to play around and all in the brakes it's not the best clothing.
In Hamburg they let the students decide what they wanted and they decided for polo shirts and shorts in summer and pullovers or sweatshirts and trousers (maybe jeans, I don't know for sure) for winter, both with a logo on the left-and side and a green-blue combo if I'm not mistaken.
That I would rather be in favour of.

Of course kids have to be taught to accept a person for who he is, and don't judge by clothing or so, though you'll never get rid of that problem, and you'll often find that their parents are no different.
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Old 10-29-2007, 02:40 PM   #71
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this is such a complex issue, yet relatively minor.

i remember the fashion bullies, and i'm a boy. i remember, specifically, in 4th grade Chuck's Converse were suddenly very popular (and, weirdly, i'm wearing a pair right now), and i wanted a pair. my mother went out and bought me imitation shoes, and i couldn't even tell the difference. they looked right, and i had never noticed the seal on the inner-ankle. but the kids at school did, and i was made fun of, and i remember going home that day very, very upset and i think i might have had some sort of tantrum and blamed my mother for my getting made fun of. and i remember her being honestly confused and sort of taken aback, and somewhat defensive ("i don't see why we should pay $40 for shoes when you can get the same look for $15") and yet kind of upset about the whole thing. to this day, it bothers me. how cruel, to both of us.

that kind of fashion fascism is also an unfortunate part of life -- i work an environment where i can wear jeans and concert t-shirts and Chuck's to work, yet outfits are every bit as highly scripted as anyone who works for a bank or a law firm. perhaps more so. and there's nothing inherently wrong with "dressing the part" -- in some businesses, it's just another facet of presentation.

and i do think that clothes can be a very important part of self-expression. especially in my high school -- everyone saw the "J.Clones" walking around with their expensive shit, and sure, they looked just fine, but everyone knew that came from a pocketbook. the kids i remember getting genuine props were those that had a unique sense of style, that may or may not have been expensive, and i can specifically remember one girl who always had something unique and refreshing about her outfit -- whether she made Elvis Stamp earrings or wove a purse out of old seatbelts, there was just something cool and creative about this one particular form of self expression, and i didn't see it as any less valid than drawing or painting.

so i'm totally torn. i can see it all ways -- it seems as if this kind of actual bullying is less about clothes, but just using clothes to hold power over weaker kids. so i'm guessing that even if uniforms were in place, the Mean Girls would find another way to put the gentler ones in their place.
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Old 10-29-2007, 02:52 PM   #72
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We didn't have uniforms at my middle school but we had an extremely strict dress code. If your pants had belt loops you had to have a belt, and all shirts except sweaters and sweatshirts had to be tucked in. You couldn't wear spaghetti strap shirts...if you were going to wear something sleeveless it had to be the width of 3 fingers on your shoulder.

I just always wore sweatshirts so it would cover up my untucked shirt and my not wearing a belt
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