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Ever since the beginning of time people have been dressing in ways that describe

their cultural background, social status, and sometimes even their religion. I

do not see why this deep tradition should be changed, throwing children of

different backgrounds all into the same unifying clothing. I did not go to a

school where I had to wear a uniform, so I do not exactly have a firsthand idea

of what it would be like to wear one. I do know though, that I would feel

uncomfortable. The way I dress is something that I take pride in and put effort

into. That might sound corny, or strange, but I really do not give a damn! I

enjoy looking good, everybody does, however not everybody will admit it. As a

senior in high school I was voted best dressed, a huge accomplishment if you

went to the school that I did. All of my friends, all of the girls that I was

interested in, and even most of the teachers dressed with a certain passion, the

passion to impress others with their outward appearance. While reading a recent

article in the Chicago Tribune by Lauren Waters, I found that Dr. Harold

Goldstein held the same opinions on the subject of school uniforms as I do. Dr.

Goldstein is the school superintendent of the Bethlehem Trinity Lutheran School

System, in Poughkeepsie, NY. Dr. Goldstein was asked to make a speech for the

National Reading Council on the topic of school uniforms, in the article he was

quoted as saying: ?In all of the fifteen years I have been teaching, I have

never seen a school that resembles an institution atmosphere as much as the

B.T.L.S.S. At first we believed that the school uniform would improve academics

and increase order in the classroom, but in reality, we now have an UN-spirited

group of children who no longer enjoy attending their own school?(Waters,

121). In this case, the school not only had a decrease in academics, it was

turned into an almost drone like atmosphere. I feel that if school uniforms were

implemented, this passion and desire to look good would be diminished. I mean,

how much control can you possibly have with your appearance, when you are told

what to wear. Originality is something that would also be destroyed. There would

be no more trend setters, or fashion experimentation. Thus, style would come to

a complete halt! Now I know that I am making this all sound very dramatic, but I

am trying to make a point here. Also, as I said in the introduction, many people

dress in affiliation with their religion or culture. If school uniforms were

brought into effect, what would happen to the Jewish kids that had to wear a

Yamalka? Could Muslim children wear head wraps, or could Christians even wear

crosses? This is another problem that would arise. Christopher Bishop, a writer

for Time Magazine, researched the idea of having school uniforms in several

Texas public schools. Bishop found the biggest problem was for the children of

the Middle East, who were unable to wear their traditional wraps and cultural

robes. ??in most cases the children were forced to just up and change

schools, and move to different community?(Bishop, 77). Kids would always be

trying to squeeze a little more freedom out of the system. Where do you draw the

line? What is wrong with kids dressing in all black with fishnet stalking on

their arms? In my opinion, nothing, it is just different. Let kids express

themselves. Let the Indians wear their full body sheets, and the cowboys wear

their oversized belt buckles. The child?s clothing is not what?s causing the

problem; it is their upbringing. The final problem that I see with school

uniforms, or atlas the last one I can think of, is money. I do not have the

faintest idea how some people can see school uniforms as being cheaper. It is

not like the kids are going to wear those ugly things everywhere. What kind of

social leper is going to wear blue trousers and penny loafers to play ball on

the weekend? Parents are still going to have to fork out money for regular

clothes. Also, what happens when an article of the uniform gets ripped, torn, or

stained? There goes a bunch more money for replacements. In a recent pole taken

in New York of 1,000 parents who had to wear school uniforms in the past and are

now faced with dilemma of sending their children to school that has uniforms,

78% said that they would not be in favor of putting their kids in uniforms. The

biggest reason was found to be because of money problems. I can see how some

people would vote for school uniforms, but I still do not think it would be an

intelligent choice. The negatives brought on by having school uniforms outweigh

positives by far. Why do we feel this need to make everybody look the same, we

are not, and in many ways. Leave the uniform to the military, not the classroom.

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