The SheHawk: Size doesn’t matter

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The SheHawk: Size doesn’t matter

Samantha Durham, Opinion Editor

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Recently the social media world has really tried to take a stand against online trolls, especially those bashing others about their weight. Unfortunately the number on a scale still seems to mean a lot more than it should. A person’s body and shape are more important to focus on than other issues like common human decency. One principal proved just how much our view of the “correct weight” is skewed due to the media and the people we admire on television.

According to The Huffington Post, a high school principal in South Carolina told her female students they should not wear leggings unless they were a size zero or two. Principal Heather Taylor stated to her students, “I’ve told you this before, I’m going to tell you this now. Unless you’re a size zero or two and you wear something like that, even though you’re not fat, you look fat” as reported by The Huffington Post.

Not only was I disgusted and appalled by this woman’s statement but her “rule” about leggings is not even stated in the school’s dress code. The Huffington Post reported that the school’s official dress code is that students may wear leggings, yoga pants, spandex, etc. as long as the top they are wearing completely covers them down to mid-thigh. Nowhere does it say a single thing about your size.

Of course, parents and students were outraged by Taylor’s comments on the issue. I am quite upset by it myself and I don’t even go to or know anyone that attends school there. It’s the whole point behind it that ruffles my feathers. No one, girl or boy should ever be told to not wear something because it makes them look fat. First of all who are you to make that call? They are the person that looks in the mirror and decides how they think they look and last time I checked no one asked their principal how they felt about it.

Not only does this show that society still values the size of a pair of pants but it also shows how little we value the feelings of others. I am not a size zero or two and I am not a bit concerned about it. I think I look perfectly fine how I am and I am going to wear leggings if I want to because I don’t give a crap if you think I look “fat” or not. However, people somehow still seem to make that their business regardless if it is going to offend an individual or not.

I might not be bothered by it but some people are. You have no idea what they think about themselves on the inside and saying they can’t wear something because of their size is just downright rude and offensive. I don’t see people lining up to tell men they can’t wear shirts that are too small or anything else. There is also nowhere on a pair of leggings that says for size twos only.

Not to mention, high school is a sensitive time. I remember not liking a lot about myself during that time and I took most people’s “constructive criticism” or “advice” in a way that was not intended. It’s a time when you are trying to figure out who you are, find confidence in who you are and also a time when your body is still changing. I used to be a double zero my freshman year of high school and I am a size four now.  However, I still like what I look like and am not ashamed to wear leggings to school or admit that I have stretch marks.

You should wear what you want and like what you wear regardless of what others think of you. If you like how you look in a pair of yoga pants, rock them. Caring about what others think of you is useless and a waste of time. Ultimately someone will always have something mean to say and it is you who gives them the power to hurt you. Wear leggings, shorts, jeans, skirts, whatever makes you happy. Life is way too short to care about what others think. If you like what you look like that is all that matters and no one should be able to tell you what you can and cannot due to your size.

This speaks to a bigger issue about body image and societal expectations of the human body. Models are portrayed as lean, busty and curvaceous. Women are supposed to be sexy and men are supposed to be “manly”, whatever that even means. To set the record straight I will dress and look sexy when I want to and I will dress like a bum when it so suits me. Societal expectations and standards should never be a reason to change what you look like.

Lesson of the day: love who you are, what you represent and what you do. Don’t make yourself miserable trying to meet an impossible expectation or by concerning yourself more with others’ perceptions of you other than your own. As long as you look in the mirror and feel proud of the person you see that is all that matters overall, regardless if you are a size two, eight, or fourteen.