By Samantha Allan
On September 14th, 2017, the article “Dress Codes Speaking Out Volumes” was published by Nathan Hritz to The Jambar column page. While I acknowledge that this is an opinion segment of The Jambar, I believe that this article displays an inappropriate reflection of the YSU community.
YSU prides itself on a diverse, open and welcoming environment for students of all backgrounds. The mission statement of the Division of Multicultural Affairs clearly states that YSU is accepting of all differences including; “age, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, ability or disability, physical appearance, personality…” (Mission of Division of Multicultural Affairs).
This statement is clear and specifically addresses that physical appearance is part of our differences. While freedom of speech is important, where is the line for someone working and representing our population? What kind of message does this send to future students?
This article goes against everything the mission relays while also dropping subtle insults about the community The Jambar is a part of. Hritz quotes blatantly offensive statements to the page such as “I think that it goes without saying that not everybody can wear skin tight clothing” (“Dress Codes Speaking Out Volumes”). Not only is this inappropriate but potentially harmful to any students that may already suffer from body image issues. A blanket statement dropped on the bottom of a page does not bandage such cutting language.
The largest piece of irony in this article is that it focuses around professionalism while lacking its own professional decency. Advice on professional dress can be informative and helpful in the right context. However, this was written in a such a way that came off as more insulting than helpful. An informal class setting is not, in any way, impacted by the dress of students and professors. A pair of yoga pants has never once hindered my own ability to take notes.
Many instances of social unrest have been occurring on campus this semester and we need each other now more than ever. An article with such negative connotations, published in the midst of chaos, is extremely inappropriate and downright unacceptable. An employee from our community should be setting a better example and supporting the school that is giving them a better future.
Students and professors are here to gain knowledge, relationships and skills that last into the future. Let’s try harder to build each other up and focus on the education.