- “I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin’s death as George Zimmerman was.”
- “You have to recognize that this whole stylizing yourself as a gangsta – you’re going to be a gangsta wannabe? Well, people are going to perceive you as a menace.”
- “My own son just wrote to say he’s ashamed of my position re hoodies-still I feel parents must do whatever they can to keep their kids safe”
- “Its not blaming the victim Its common sense-look like a gangsta&some armed schmuck will take you at your word”
I never knew that wearing a hoodie and looking like a gangsta were synonymous. Herein lies part of the problem with Geraldo Rivera’s argument. For some reason, Rivera is fixated on the hoodie being a dangerous article of clothing. A hoodie alone, I don’t believe, can be considered responsible for endangering someone’s life. And looking like a gangsta shouldn’t be responsible either, though, it probably would sway someone to look at a person with a much more vigilant eye.
What we wear, that is, our entire attire, and not just one article of clothing, certainly does influence people to form a particular judgment of us. Society as a whole simply does not hold the same opinion of an individual wearing baggy street clothes and of one wearing more formal attire, especially if the former is of a minority group and the latter is white. Sometimes even the same clothes on individuals of different races will formulate different judgments. Whether we like it or not, someone’s outside appearance and race will determine the type of attention, reaction, and treatment they will receive.
What’s important to remember is that clothing should not fabricate, whether positively or negatively, an individual’s character, and, consequently, cannot adequately determine their threat to society. Wearing gangsta-looking clothes does not automatically mean that someone is dangerous, just like wearing a suit, let’s say, does not mean that someone cannot be dangerous; it works both ways. Ultimately, even if someone looks like a gangsta no one should want to shoot them if they’re not being harmed by them.
Having grown up in a community that is primarily made up of African American, Asian, and Latino populations, I have seen and have been one of those stereotypical hoodie-wearing, young, and dark-skinned males. There was a time when I choose to wear clothes far bigger than my actual size because I was influenced by what I saw around me, but not because I was part of that crowd. Eventually I grew out of that phase and started wearing clothes that actually fit. Part of the reason was because I didn’t want to be associated with negative social circles; deep down I knew that outside of my community people would associate me and my clothing choices with being a gangsta. At no point in time, however, did I stop wearing hoodies.
While I do believe that individuals, especially those from minority groups, should choose what they wear carefully in order to not be seen as a threat, at the end of the day clothing choices is not what kills people. Weapons in the hands of ignorant and racist individuals who make lethal and rash decisions based on someone’s appearance, is what kills people.
- lacking depth of intellect or knowledge; concerned only with what is obvious
Being shallow gives someone a bad reputation, and I’m not sure why. Everyone is shallow. At one point or another we are all concerned with someone’s outside appearance more so than anything else, though, hopefully that’s only temporarily.
Is shallowness a bad thing? I’m thinking, no. Here’s why:
- Physical attractiveness is relative.
Shallowness is associated with being interested only in attractive people. But if you’re shallow, it simply means you focus on the outside appearance. We seek out potential partners that fit our physical preferences based on their appearance. Whether that appearance is attractive or not, is another issue. And even then, what is attractive to one person won’t always be attractive to another.
- Helps ease the dating process.
Shallowness is a natural part of courtship, and quite frankly necessary. We can give every person a glance, but we can’t possibly give every person a chance. It would be impossible to try to date every person we cross paths with, simply because we might have things in common. Certainly what’s on the inside is what’s most important, but what’s on the outside helps to considerably narrow down the dating pool in the beginning.
- It’s as natural as natural selection.
We are drawn to those who can best meet our physical needs and desires so that we can reach personal gratification. If those needs and desires are not met, the chances of straying away from our partners would be higher. There’s no point in dating someone who won’t make us fully happy in our relationship because we’ll end up seeking someone else instead (note: I don’t mean cheating, but simply leaving a partner to search for another).
I guess the controversy over shallowness arises because one’s appearance is not the complete package, and to be liked or disliked based only on that is not completely fair. But the reality is, our appearance has a heavy influence on others’ willingness to date us.
My emphasis here is that being shallow should not necessarily be thought of as being interested only in good looking people. “Good looking” can be observed differently by different individuals. Shallowness is more of the concern over someone’s appearance (e.g. height, muscles, curves, tattoos, piercings, etc.), more so than anything else. Ideally, that concern would only be during the initial meet and greet phase, and eventually the focus would shift to inner characteristics.
Did you know that the most times Friday the 13th can happen in a year is three? Well, this year will have all three of them, the first being today and the next two on April and July. I also heard that they happen to be 13 weeks apart. I counted, and they are indeed. The only way this could be even more interesting is if the year was 2013 instead of 2012.
There are two terms for those who are fearful of today, they are friggatriskaidekaphobia and paraskevidekatriaphobia. Whoever is responsible for starting this fear is probably laughing out loud in their grave somewhere. This person might possibly be Thomas W. Lawson, who wrote a book a hundred years ago, Friday, the Thirteenth, which is about crashing the stock market on the day of the week and number considered to be unlucky. Whatever the case may be, it’s funny how some things can catch fire and lead to such a large “following.”
There’s no real data to show that Friday the 13th is noticeably more dangerous than other days. But, even if you’re not superstitious it’s hard to ignore today’s preconceived bad luck and if you’re like me, you will second guess things you have planned to do. For example, I was planning on cutting my hair today but, supposedly, if you cut your hair on a Friday the 13th, someone in your family will die. While this may or may not be true, do I really want to test it? No. I just hope my family members can return the favor.