A Florida judge has proclaimed a constitutional right to show your under drawers in public.
A 17-year-old spent a night in jail last week after police arrested him for wearing low pants in Riviera Beach, southeast Florida. The law banning so-called “saggy pants” was approved by city voters in March after supporters of the bill collected nearly 5,000 signatures to put the measure on the ballot. The teen would have received a 150 dollars fine or community service, but he spent the night in jail due to a history of marijuana use, the Palm Beach Post newspaper said.
“Somebody help me,” said Palm Beach Circuit Judge Paul Moyle, before giving his decision. “We’re not talking about exposure of buttocks. No! We’re talking about someone who has on pants whose underwear are apparently visible to a police officer who then makes an arrest and the basis is he’s then held overnight, no bond.”
I don’t have a copy of the written opinion, if there even is one, but it seems that Moyle is confusing the constitution with his sense of what a good law looks like.
Now, I happen to agree that municipalities have no business regulating fashion choices and that the harm to the public from seeing the upper portion of someone’s skivvies is too minimal to warrent regulation, let alone the expenditure of state resources to enforce. But precisely what provision of the Florida Constitutions guarantees the right to show off your BVDs? Is this emanating from a penumbra somewhere or what?