Wildwood, N.J., wants you to hike your droopy pants

The shore town aims to cultivate a family-friendly image by banning folks from walking the boardwalk 'with their butts hanging out.'

By Jonathan Berr Jun 12, 2013 2:35PM
Boy with baggy pants on subway (© Keith Goldstein/Photographer's Choice RF/Getty Images)Wildwood, N.J., hopes to get young people to hike up their droopy pants where many others have failed.

The Jersey shore town is expected to approve a ban at a City Council meeting later Wednesday on what The Associated Press described as "overly saggy jeans that show underwear or skin when worn on the boardwalk." Offenders would be hit with fines ranging from $25 to $200, depending on the severity of the offense. The city also wants people to wear shirts and shoes when walking on the boardwalk.

Mayor Ernie Troiano told the Philadelphia Inquirer that the town is striking a blow for decency and noted that officials are "tired of looking at people walking around with their butts hanging out." He didn't respond to an email from MSN Money.

Wildwood has plenty at stake in diving into this cultural phenomenon.

Tourism is big business at the Jersey shore. About 59 million people visit the region annually, spending about $19 billion every year. The area is especially eager to get the word out that it's open for business in the wake of the devastation wrought last year by Superstorm Sandy. 


Critics, however, are mocking the baggy-pants crackdown, which could be unconstitutional, saying it's a clumsy attempt by Wildwood to shed its reputation as a raucous party town whose year-round population of 5,400 swells to more than 150,000 in summer.

"If Wildwood wants to 'maintain a family-friendly image,' their better bet is to stop letting houses rent to packs of 18-year-olds and their much younger friends on senior and prom week trips," Jen Miller wrote on Phillymag.com.

 

Indeed, a well-intentioned ordinance would be difficult to enforce. Some experts have raised concerns that it could lead to racial profiling. It seems likely that the job of fashion police would fall to the city's Class II Special Law Enforcement officers, who are employed in summer to help keep order. That presents its own problems.


"Most Special law Enforcement Officers are col­lege stu­dents, usu­ally but not always crim­i­nal jus­tice majors," according to the Wildwood Police Department's website. "Working with our depart­ment pro­vides valu­able expe­ri­ence to the indi­vid­ual as well as allows the offi­cer to receive cred­its towards their degree as well as sup­ple­ment­ing our ranks."


They may get more of an education than they bargained for.


Follow Jonathan Berr on Twitter @jdberr.


More on moneyNOW

457Comments
Jun 12, 2013 3:16PM
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It surprises me that the baggy pants style has lasted this long. I guess the idiots that dress that way are too stupid to realize just how ridiculous they look. What surprises me even more are the ones that have a girlfriend. Really?
Jun 12, 2013 3:00PM
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I once resolved this issue of saggy baggy pants on a Student. I told him that if he came into my class one more time with his butt and Jockey's Sticking out again I would pull the pants down.

 

The next day he came into class again with that loverly butt and jockeys band sticking out above his pants which were almost down his butt------while he was talking with peers I simply walked up behind him and literally didn't have to tug just touch those jeans and they went down. He ran out of the class thoroughly embarrassed but apologized to me later that day!

 

The next day outside my classes door I saw him tie a rope through the pant's lopes and He Came in looking like a young man over that of a wanna be Hoodlum. He learned to respect self and others simply from that act! Couple days later no one in the school had to view those jockeys anymore, as he learned self respect too! 

Jun 12, 2013 3:30PM
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one way to make this "uncool" would be for older people to start mimicking the style.  Once gramma and grampa start sporting this look, it will no longer be something kids like. 
Jun 12, 2013 3:01PM
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Sould not only be Wildwood, NJ, but the entire USA, no ifs, ands, or butts.  Goes for bikini bottoms also.
Jun 12, 2013 3:29PM
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Sagging pants originated in prison. Cons would advertise that they were "available" by wearing their pants low. Explain that to them and see if it makes a difference.
Jun 12, 2013 3:39PM
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I got to see a real life comedy when four young men robbed a place and try to make a get away.  They jumped into their vehicle and took off but were quickly surrounded by several police cars.  They jumped out of the car to make a run for it.  Two  made it about 2 feet whereupon their pants fell to the ground tripping them immediately.  The furthest any actually got was about a half block.  I must confess I was in tears laughing so hard.  Real life strikes again.
Jun 12, 2013 3:14PM
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Racial profiling? really?? are we reaching here? Fashion profiling maybe, ageism might be more like it.

The only ones who might be in fear of this law would be young men who haven't a clue as to the meaning of drooping pants. If they did I do believe this would stop. As far a racial profiling I have unfortunately seen all color of ****'s since the new style has come about, all brands and styles of underwear too!. I give a big Kudos's to Jersey stepping up and saying no more! Wish more people would do the same.

I am the mother of two young men and trust me if their pants started sagging they knew it, because I came right behind them and pulled them up rather rapidly. Belts became their new best friend after a couple times of that. And the belts where around their waist not their buttocks.

What kind of society have we become when decency is unconstitutional? Our For Fathers have got to be rolling over in their graves right about now!

Jun 12, 2013 3:25PM
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amen at least someone is trying to do something about it
Jun 12, 2013 3:30PM
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I always thought that the baggy pants made it look like the guys had pooped in their pants!

 

It's disgusting!  Not interested in "seeing it all"....on either sex!

Jun 12, 2013 3:29PM
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After raising 6 kids and now having 10 grandkids, I’ve always thought these droopy pants looked like they had a load in their diapers.  
Jun 12, 2013 3:05PM
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Never show anyone your pooper. You never know who might go in there.
Jun 12, 2013 3:20PM
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Back in the day (the sixties that is)  girls never wore pants either, things started going down hill after that, more unwed mothers too..  When I was in high school our skirts were only allowed to be 3 inches above the knee, starting from the middle that is.  Anything goes nowdays and it's pitiful!!!  We respected our parents an other adults, especially the teachers, it's purely disgusting how the children act, and I call them children because they act like it!!!
Jun 12, 2013 3:24PM
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I know how to solve the problem.  Make them wear them to gym class and require them to run a mile on the outdoor track before they can go to their next class. They will be there all day and fall on their smug faces many times!
Jun 12, 2013 3:24PM
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It looks like they have 5 pounds of Shiite in the pants. Hopefully this fashion trend disappears.
Jun 12, 2013 3:21PM
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Let the pants hang down,makes it easier for cops to catch their soory butts when they commit a crime
Jun 12, 2013 3:25PM
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Worked as a Correctional Officer and use to tell the inmates that nobody wanted to see their butt and to pull up their pants. Kudos to Wildwood . I also grew up in Jersy and spent every summer in Wildwood and it was a family town . Now Summers Point well that's another story
Jun 12, 2013 3:23PM
Jun 12, 2013 3:27PM
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I CALLED THE CITY WERE I LIVE JUST LAST WEEK . OUR TRASH MEN ARE PRISONERS I WAS BEHIND A TRUCK LAST WEEK AND THE PRISONERS PANTS WERE HANGING AND HIS NAKED **** WAS SHOWING . I CALLED THE CITY AND TOLD THEM I DONT THINK I SHOULD HAVE TO LOOK AT A NAKED **** HANGINF FROM THE TRASH TRUCK. OR ANYBODY ELSE SHOULD HAVE TO EITHER
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