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apples to apples
stiletto heels
preconceived notions
airline employees
first impressions
baggy pants
Deshon Marmon Arrested For Wearing Baggy Pants?
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How would you feel if you are sending your son or someone you knew and cared about back to college and he is arrested for wearing baggy pants? As crazy as this sounds, Deshon Marmon, was returning to the University of New Mexico for football practice from San Francisco aboard a US Airways flight and he as I am sure most of his contempararies was wearing baggy pants.

As a parent, of a fourteen year old male, I am not sure of what law(s) were broken but I am confident that his parents, Marmon's, had advised their son to "pull those pants up" before going anywhere just as I have told my son on many occasions. However; sometimes our best advice often times goes unheeded when it comes to young men that want to represent their uniqueness and identity.

This advice and counsel to "pull your pants up" is given with love and the understanding that societal laws and personal judgement are often unfair with regard to first impressions and preconceived notions. We know, historically, the injustices that occur as a result of appearance, gender, or social station that are justified and wrapped up within the blanket of laws and legal machinations.

Ironically, one week before Marmon was arrested, a 65 year old cross dresser, Howard, was allowed to board a US Airways flight from Ft. Lauderdale, FL. to Phoenix, Arizona, wearing stiletto heels, a pair of thigh high black stockings, a tiny blue panty with a string top to match. Also, he wore a white shoulder wrap to more modestly cover the women's undergarments.

Although the other passengers complained about Howard's attire to the airline employees, the US Airways employees ignored the complaints and Howard was allowed to board without incident.

Where is the justice? Deshon Marman wearing baggy pants and Howard attired in skimpy women's undergarments hardly are an apples to apples comparison. The other passengers flying with Harmon did not raise any concerns or issues. I see on a daily basis young men of every ethnicity "sagging", wearing baggy pants and have yet to see anyone arrested.

A US Airways spokesperson issued a statement after the Howard incident but before Marmon was arrested for wearing baggy pants that US Airways does not have a dress code policy. If a dress code policy does not apply then why was it applied. Either a dress code policy exists or it does not! Or, can a non-existent arbitrary policy be applied at the whim or discretion of a person in charge simply because it is felt to be inappropriate attire or because the cross dresser happened to be white and the young football player at 5' 11" and 195 pounds happened to be black?

The "underwear bomber", Umar Abdul Mutallab, posed a much greater problem than baggy pants. Umar boarded a flight in Amsterdam bound for Detroit, MI, on December 25, 2009, and attempted to detonate plastic explosives hidden in his underwear. Now that is a real and present danger. Baggy pants even if they do not look like they are clean still do not present a clear and present danger. Even an old man wearing women's undergarments is not a real and present danger.

Race, is still an issue in this country, and the arrest of Deshon Marman because he wore baggy pants, continues to raise questions about the unequal application of justice toward anyone whose appearance or countenance is different from the preceived norm. This misapplied attitudinal judgement is exercised and felt everyday and is wrong. I don't condone the wearing of baggy pants just as I don't condone the openly wearing of women's undergarments because it offends my sensibilities and I don't think an arrest and detention was justified. US Airlines should publicly apologize to Deshon Marmon and his family for their egregious behavior and internally provide appropriate guidance to minimize future occurrences.

Street Talk

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