Morehouse Appropriate Attire Policy: A Matter of Pride?

A few weeks while having lunch with a friend the topic of “sagging” came up. “Sagging” is the hip-hop fashion term used to describe wearing ill-fitting pants which expose underwear. Ugh!

See this guy?

Underwear Showing

He’s sagging.

Anyway, neither one of us finds this an attractive look.  As a confirmed 40-something bachelorette, I can assure you this “cougar” is not giving the time of day to any cub or coalition with pants hanging off the butt. When jeans are worn like this, a guy has to alter his gait. Most guys who sport this look don’t walk with their heads held high. Instead they shuffle their feet with hunched shoulders and heads hanging.

There is no splendor in the swagger.

There is no pride in the stride.

See this Morehouse man? Martin Luther King Jr

He walked with pride.

What about this Morehouse Man?


He’s walkin’ proud and we can’t see his BVDs!

Morehouse College’s new President, Dr. Robert Michael Franklin imagesrecently     implemented a new dress code.

You can read another opinion about the Morehouse College Appropriate Attire Policy here.

Morehouse College Appropriate Attire Policy October 2009

Published in The Maroon Tiger

It is our expectation that students who select Morehouse do so because of the College’s outstanding legacy of producing leaders. On the campus and at College-sponsored events and activities, students at Morehouse College will be expected to dress neatly and appropriately at all times.

Students who choose not to abide by this policy will be denied admission into class and various functions and services of the College if their manner of attire is inappropriate. Examples of inappropriate attire and/or appearance include but are not limited to:

1. No caps, do-rags and/or hoods in classrooms, the cafeteria, or other indoor venues. This policy item does not apply to headgear considered as a part of religious or cultural dress.

2. Sun glasses or “shades” are not to be worn in class or at formal programs, unless medical documentation is provided to support use.

3. Decorative orthodontic appliances (e.g. “grillz”) be they permanent or removable, shall not be worn on the campus or at College-sponsored events.

4. Jeans at major programs such as, Opening Convocation, Commencement, Founder’s Day or other programs dictating professional, business casual attire, semi-formal or formal attire.

5. Clothing with derogatory, offense and/or lewd messages either in words or pictures.

6. Top and bottom coverings should be work at all times. No bare feet in public venues.

7. No sagging–the wearing of one’s pants or shorts low enough to reveal undergarments or secondary layers of clothing.

8. Pajamas, shall not be worn while in public or in common areas of the College.

9. No wearing of clothing associated with women’s garb (dresses, tops, tunics, purses, pumps, etc.) on the Morehouse campus or at College-sponsored events.

10. Additional dress regulations may be imposed upon students participating in certain extracurricular activities that are sponsored or organized by the College (e.g. athletic teams, the band, Glee Club, etc).

11. The college reserves the right to modify this policy as deemed appropriate.

*All administrative, faculty, students and support staff members are asked to assist in enforcing this policy and may report disregard or violations to the Office of Student Conduct.”

I am not mad at Dr. Franklin! I applaud the initiative to curb the hybridity of pop culture-hip-hop influenced fashion trends and professional student attire. I am all about being true.

I am a champion of self-expression but do really need to wear your “grill” to Biology? Should you wear pajamas to a history lecture? I mean either you are in bed or you are not.

I do believe #9 in the policy hinders the transgender and gay students, that caveat is worthy of scrutiny. Traditionally, Morehouse has not been a gay-friendly environment but Dr. Franklin is trying to move attitudes about sexual orientation in a more positive direction.


Overall I see the move to a stricter dress code less of an inhibitor of variety and more of an impetus toward creating congruency, respect, pride and tradition for students as well as professors in this historically unique educational environment.

Maybe it is a matter of pride.

Pasted Graphic





Leave a comment

No comments yet.

Comments RSS TrackBack Identifier URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s