Alabama City Considers Banning Short Shorts & Miniskirts

PHOTOGRAPHED BY CHRISTIAN VIERIG.
Dadeville, Alabama, is a city with a population of just over 3,000 people. The Twitter account for its Chamber of Commerce promotes ribbon cuttings at the new Piggly Wiggly and a Cornhole Tournament. So why is it making national news?

It's all down to the City Council. Last month, City Councilman Frank Goodman proposed an ordinance banning residents from sporting saggy pants, citing the look as "disrespectful."

Now, Alex City Outlook reports that Councilwoman Stephanie Kelley has suggested adding a similar clothing ban for women.

"My concern is it should be for everybody," Kelley said during this Tuesday's council meeting. "I think for the girls, with these shorts up so high looking like undergarments and dresses so short, I don't want us to be showing favoritism."

That's not quite the blow against gender inequality we were looking for. The issue here, however, isn't whether or not it's fair to target one sex alone. It's whether it's appropriate — or even legal — to impose your moral standards on another individual, let alone an entire populace.

This isn't a high school principal sending people to detention for breaking the dress code. This is a city enforcing a very arbitary ordinance on its residents. Who is to say what is and isn't respectful? Taylor Swift wears short skirts — would she be breaking the law?

Wearing jeans in church, doing your local shopping in flannel pajama bottoms, flaunting your legs in a short skirt...these will all draw ire from at least one person. Does that mean you have to ban them all? It's a slippery issue, and ultimately seems a question of etiquette — not the law.

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