wJeremiads
"Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -Aldous Huxley

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wSunday, March 17, 2002


INTRODUCING: Here's the debut of my kid brother to the world of opinion journalism. I edited it a bit but the points are his own. It was a five-paragraph essay assignment for an English class. The 'lil guy comes out swinging against school uniforms. Not bad for a 12 year old, eh? (Send me any comments and I'll pass them along.)

"Dear Ms. ______,

"School uniforms are a very bad idea. This letter will explain why we should not adopt them. I list three arguments against uniforms, but the list could be much longer. First, kids need to be able to express themselves. Part of this is picking out the clothes that we want to wear. Second, uniforms are almost always ugly. Third, they are rarely comfortable.

"On the first point, when I wake up in the morning, I ask myself what I want to wear to school that day. I would rather not have somebody else pick out my clothes for me because then those clothes would not be an expression of what I want to say. This isn't to say that common sense doesn't matter: If it's cold, I wear a sweater; if warm, shorts. But I don't want somebody else to dictate that I wear the same thing every day.

"Second, I'm sorry but I do not want to wear an ugly [ass] uniform. I would rather be left free to choose something that looks good. One argument in favor of uniforms is that they make everybody look the same (ugly), but in practice this is not true. Not only will they look better on some people than others, everybody will try their best to alter the look of their individual uniforms to try to look different, and to cover over the ugliness foisted upon us by school administrators.

"Finally, uniforms tend to be uncomfortable. Those who pick the uniforms for us wouldn't dare to wear them. It would damage my ability to pay attention in class if I was in uncomfortable clothing. I wouldn't study as hard and I'd have a harder time performing on tests. There are many kids who would be similarly challenged.

"I have listed a few reasons why we should not have school uniforms. Bottom line: Kids would be unhappy and it would rebound poorly to their performance in class. If we attend school to be educated, then introducing uniforms would have a profoundly negative effect.

"Cordially,

"Chris Lott."


posted by Jeremy at 11:52 PM