Monday, February 26, 2007


Droopy Drawers

In 2004, Louisiana state legislator Derrick Shepherd (D-Jefferson Parish) proposed House Bill 1626:
R.S. 14:106.3 is hereby enacted to read as follows:

§ 106.3. Illegally wearing pants below waist in public; penalty

  A. It shall be unlawful for any person to appear in public wearing his pants below his waist and thereby exposing his skin or intimate clothing.

  B. Whoever violates the provisions of this Section shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both.
Similarly in 2005, Virginia state legislator Algie Howell (D-Norfolk) proposed House Bill 1981:
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That the Code of Virginia is amended by adding a section numbered 18.2-387.1 as follows:

§ 18.2-387.1. Indecent display of underwear.

Any person who, while in a public place, intentionally wears and displays his below-waist undergarments, intended to cover a person's intimate parts, in a lewd or indecent manner, shall be subject to a civil penalty of no more than $50. "Intimate parts" has the same meaning as in § 18.2-67.10.
Who says the Democrats aren't the party of family values? Neither bill became law. The custom of wearing droopy drawers has a long pedigree. The earliest mention I can find is by Giovanni Boccaccio (1313-1375) in his Decameron 8.5 (tr. Frances Winwar):
But what was most astonishing, in Maso's opinion, was the pair of breeches that graced him which, as he sat, and his clothes spread open back and front because of the stinginess of their cut, revealed a baggy seat, that hung at least half-way down his thighs.
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