Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Somewhere else

By Capt. Fogg

"Psst! - whadda you in for?"

"My second DUI - hit a cop car. I got 30 days. What about you?"

"My underwear showed - second time too. I got 60 days."

Something from Saturday Night Live? Mad Magazine? More like something from the Riviera Beach Florida Police blotter. If the new ordinance is passed on March 11th, this kind of idiocy may and probably will become commonplace in that Palm Beach County community and that's just what Riviera Beach needs - more kids doing time and learning to do crime.

Perhaps it will end - at long last - the exposed navel atrocity that seems to have gone on forever now and the saggy pants phenomenon that passes for culture with today's gleefully idiotic youth - but most likely not. I recall many close calls with mob action when I dared have longish hair in the 1960's and certainly the ladies of the blue hair didn't approve of my dress, but nothing changed those things but time and fashion and now it's baggy pants and the urgent need to amend the city charter so that those baggy pants won't destroy society like gay marriage has.

60 days in jail for the second time someone catches you with your pants down far enough that any skin or any underwear is visible. I'm trying to sell the Florida Tourism Board on a new Slogan: Florida - it's somewhere else.

Somewhere where we are willing to feed and house baggy pants kids while if they stay in school and pull up their pants we spend so little on their education that we rank 49 out of 50, according to the Teacher's union. We just voted to spend less. Maybe it's better to show some boxer shorts and go to a place where you can actually learn a skill. It's somewhere else.

We just voted to spend less so Florida will be able to offer a State or Community College education to even fewer students while the cost to the rest goes up. That will ensure even more uneducated people to be in a position to scream and yell about the 2% of us who are Hispanic taking all those dish washing, lawn mowing and cane cutting jobs the "illegals" are taking away.

It's somewhere where the many older and disabled people trying to survive on Social Security benefits are being exploited by banks and "Payday" lenders to the tune of 400% interest and other charges. The law bars the government from sending a recipient's benefits directly to lenders but here the banks are simply deducting government deposits from their accounts and making direct payments to lenders that often swallow people's income whole . It's the sort of thing they used to put people in jail for when it was done by guys with no necks. It's all nice and corporate now. It's a $50 billion industry all dressed up in a nice suit and there has been a flood of TV advertising where nice people tell you not to borrow unless you know you can pay it back - just like the guy in the black shirt and white tie used to say in those movies. Hell the whole country is somewhere else.

It's a country where Mike Huckabee can insist that all we need is the Ten Commandments, which of course say nothing about loan sharking, much less about human rights, corporate transactions or any of the other countless things we need laws for. In fact Biblical law is all for doing horrible things to people for no particular reason other than they were born into some other tribe or other or use the cotton thread to sew woolen clothes or turn on a light on Saturday or eat cheeseburgers or Lobster Bisque. Those commandments are quite specific about making images though - images of anything even in the "waters under the Earth" that don't exist and quite specific that there will be no worship of anyone but Yahweh. It's much better than US law though says the former fat man who thinks we should dispense with it all. Funny that a nation Huckabee would like is so hard to differentiate from Waziristan. In fact an open air loony bin like that doesn't seem so much like somewhere else at all any more.

Cross posted from Human Voices

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, I can only agree with you partly on the baggy pants issue. While I did my share of unconventional dressing in my youth, the pants around the knees is a bit too much public indecency. Can you imagine how those same kids would howl if you or I paraded around in our underwear? But, putting them in jail is ridiculous. I think a fine might be in order and if they're underage, fine their parents. I don't care if they dress risque, hell, youth is so fleeting, might as well flaunt it while you got it, but if they need to interact with me for any reason, the first thing I tell these clowns is,"No one is going to take you seriously when it looks like you can't even dress yourself. If you want to continue this conversation, pull your damn pants up."

2:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agreed Rocky, God, I remember actually going to school in light blue bellbottoms with a wide pasley belt! How sick is that?

One difference is that, that dress was a fad having to do with hippies and that whole scene. The baggy pants, at least in California, have roots in the gangs and were originally part of the gang dress.

9:30:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

I think it's a pretty dangerous thing to start imprisoning people for a glimpse of underwear. Regardless of where it started, it has, like the backwards hat thing, become almost mainstream and it will grow as long as we allow it to be so infuriating and it goes a long way to affirm that society and the law are worth flaunting.

And yes, I went to school looking just like Jesus. When they made it mandatory to wear a tie in the Student Union, several of us wore just that - a tie.

Thank god there are no pictures.

10:14:00 PM  

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