Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Our Casually Dressed Society

Over at Mimmenblog (georgemimmen.blogspot.com), George was talking about the more contemporary services at many churches that he sees as an affront to God. I agreed with him in a comment I posted, especially regarding the way people are dressed in church at these services. The problem with dressing casually isn't just found in our nation's churches however, it is found everywhere. Just this morning during our daily walk, I was lamenting to my wife that I didn't think I wore a shirt and tie enough during the last school year. I would like to wear one every day, but then I feel guilty for ignoring all the nice, but casual, clothes that are also in my closet, such as polo shirts and such. She made the suggestion that I should wear a shirt and tie on Mon-Thu, a polo or button up shirt with jeans on (casual) Fridays, then wear polos on weekends instead of t-shirts; save the t-shirts for working out and sleeping. I think it's a good idea. Before I got my permanent teaching job, I was a long term substitute teacher at a local high school. One of the other teachers in my department was this hippy long-of-tooth who dressed worse than the students. Don't get me wrong, he was a great guy, and I valued what I learned from him as a teacher, but almost every day, he would wear a t-shirt and jeans, and a pair of canvas-type Converse basketball shoes. He was a baby boomer who came of age in the 1960's, and it was his generation that threw formality out the window, all in the name of their utopian, egalitarian identity with the poor, oppressed working class. My dad is a great dresser. He always dresses up, even if he is going to travel some long distance in the car. He is into slacks, polo shirts, and dress shoes. I like that. When I was a kid, we traveled on Amtrak to see my relatives down in southern California. As we were waiting for the train to arrive, there was a fellow passenger standing next to us in jeans and a t-shirt. My dad proceeded to tell me that once upon a time, when people travelled, they dressed to kill. Whether it was a train, plane, or automobile, men wore suits, and women wore pretty dresses. Sometimes, I think I should have been born in the 1950's. I am not the only one who feels this way about our casually dressed nation. On the "Grrr" feature at Foxnews.Com, a guy named Brad posted his feelings about the subject, and I have pasted them for you below:

Casual dressing is a pox on our society. Our society has lost civility, manners and the remotest hint of personal responsibility ever since the 1950s and 1960s, and the decline in proper attire is only one symptom of the problem. Young people should be taught proper attire for each situation, but alas, their Baby Boomer parents have no clue, either. This is because they choose the mantra of "comfort" over belonging to a polite society, a sure sign of the selfishness that pervades our nation. Their choice in footwear is disrespectful of the office of the president, and is not acceptable, as you said, because they consider President Bush to be accessible. They simply don't know how to dress respectfully. When I go out to a nice restaurant and pay $30 or more for a plate, I don't wish to sit near someone who is wearing shorts, his "best" T-shirt and sandals. Sadly, this happens all too often, and it shows that the person does not have enough respect for that restaurant to present themselves in a respectable manner. That lack of respect reflects directly back on themselves. Whatever happened to dress codes? They need to be reinstated and enforced. A properly-attired society is the sign of a healthy, moral and, most importantly, responsible society.

Good Day to you Sir.


Anonymous said...

You should write professionally. I enjoy reading your conversational style.

George said...

Thanks for the plug. I am not typing in a shirt and tie though.

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