Everyone has a personal preference for dress. I’d rather not see anyone wearing spandex tights as if they were jeans, but I can’t say that it harms anybody. Which is why when 20-year old University of New Mexico football player Deshon Marman was harrassed by a US Airways employee, interrogated by the airline captain, and eventually arrested by police over his choice of wearing sagging pants, it provoked alarm and outrage across the country.
But what is even more alarming is that, while Marman a fully-clothed African American male was arrested over sagging pants… Days later, this unidentified man was allowed to board and fly on a US Airways plane without incident, though several passengers complained about by his dress.
See his controversial outfit below:
Regarding this “cross-dressing” incident, US Airways spokeswoman Valerie Wunder told the Associated Press:
We don’t have a dress code policy. Obviously, if their private parts are exposed, that’s not appropriate… so if they’re not exposing their private parts, they’re allowed to fly.
Is sagging pants a national security threat? Does it endanger the lives of passengers or crew?
It was clear that Marman’s pants did not affect the safety of other passengers, nor did it compromise the crew’s ability to safely complete the flight. Instead, it seems the incident was just another case of power-happy individuals wanting to exert authority over helpless others –who disproportionately happen to be young, black, and male.
Marman’s mother says the situation between her son and US Airways never should have escalated this far…
Sagging pants is just one of many vestiges of hip hop culture, which is not exclusively practiced by black men, though black men seem to take the brunt of the heat over the fashion trend.
Upon his arrest, Marman’s official charges were suspicion of trespassing, battery of a police officer and obstruction after refusing to leave the plane on the captain’s orders.
His real crime: traveling while black, male, wearing dreadlocks, and having the build of an athlete.
Sagging pants may be a harmless trend for someone who doesn’t fit this profile, but in Deshon Marman’s case, his style of dress was scrutinized more carefully than his boarding pass.