Calvin dress code:Because some skin is only for HimIf it weren't too strict, I wouldn't mind it.
-Geoff Kraker, junior- I don't really feel like we need one. Students mostly don't dress inappropriately here.
-Sarah Baker, freshman- A lot of colleges that do that, it seems they are trying to create a certain type of student.
-Karis Medina, sophomore- That's something Cornerstone would do.
-Phil McMillan, sophomore- I wouldn’t approve of that because of the responsible freedom issue and the idea behind making students dress more conservatively.
-Cat Rau, junior-
A dress code would contradict responsible freedom By Emily Rattray Perspectives Editor There is no need for a dress code at Calvin College. Sure, several other Christian colleges do enforce rules about how the students may dress, but these are also the schools that have curfews, censor your music, and where the phrase “responsible freedom” is not common. What separates Calvin from these other schools is the faith that is invested in the students to make their own decisions and to learn from their own mistakes. To create and enforce a dress code for the student body would compromise that position. I am not denying that there is a problem with how some students, admittedly mainly female, choose to dress. In Calvin Matters (http://www.calvin.edu/archive/calvin-matters/) one professor cites an incident where a female student was wearing a shirt with a lime on it that said “Squeeze me” across the chest. Exposed cleavage is commonplace. Perhaps, before investigating solutions to this problem, we should think about the cause of the problem. Modern society puts a huge emphasis on the physical appearance of women with the constant outside pressure from the media to become this image. Another factor in this epidemic is the changing gender role of women in pop culture. This is again an ideal perpetuated through the media – an image that “empowers” women by giving them more sexual freedom. According to Breitbart news, both men and women are much more sexually active today than in our parents’ generation, and they become sexually active at younger ages. The average age for women has gone from 19 years old for the last generation to 15 years old for ours. This modern, more sexual role for women has been reflected in clothing styles. That is not just to say that women dress in a way that is more sexual, but, to get more to the core of the problem, the clothing styles available for women are more sexual. The bottom line is that it is difficult for women to find clothes that are appropriately modest, short of wearing men’s clothes. How should these issues be resolved? A dress code would certainly be an easy solution. But perhaps an approach toward this problem more in the Calvin spirit would be to have open forums discussing these issues and how to approach them, as well as how we present ourselves, in a Christian manner. Students are much more willing to confront issues than to have policies forced upon them. Would it not be more effective to address these issues, which have caused the inappropriate dress, than to blanket the real issue and create a quick-fix solution such as a dress code? If a dress code is forced upon the student body then students are no longer able to learn how to dress appropriately once they have left the Calvin bubble. This would be exceptionally problematic within the workplace. College is a place for learning, and Calvin is most certainly a safer place to learn in than the greater outside world.
A dress code would help enforce a Christian environment By Josh Ahrens Guest Writer This campus has long encouraged students to explore the world while remaining apart from it, to engage the culture but not submerge themselves within it. At the very core of Calvin College there is an urge to understand the society around us while not being subsumed by that society. Yet, students who can legally purchase alcohol are not allowed to keep it on campus. This is to maintain the moral standards that Calvin College espouses. Similarly, pornography is discouraged because it is degrading and counters to that same standard of morality. Why then should Calvin not implement a dress code? A dress code would ensure that Calvin students are not only modest, but also inoffensive to each other. It is a question of respect and civility rather than one of personal rights, just as the campus ban on pornography and alcohol is a question of respect and civility. Now a dress code is not a uniform. Simply having standards of what is or is not acceptable to wear does not deny a freedom of choice or infringe on personal freedoms. Dress codes are not designed to make people into carbon copies of each other, but rather to ensure that everyone is inoffensive while maintaining his or her own style. While growing up I attended Christian schools, and they had dress codes which did not allow for offensive writing. There were a few other rules (such as “make sure we cannot see your underwear”), but they were minor and hardly inconvenient. If the tradeoff is between my right to wear what I want and your right to feel safe and comfortable in your college environment, why should I protest a school policy designed to do just that? Clothing is secondary, it is a reflection of yourself, true, but only because we make it so. Of itself, it is merely clothing, strips of cloth used to hide everyone’s naughty bits and back hair. What color it is, what style, what brand and even what writing is on the clothing is functionally irrelevant. Dress codes may be unnecessary for some people, they may even be needlessly restrictive, but if Calvin elects to implement one so that students can feel comfortable (as in, not offended) in their place of education, then they are justified in doing so.