Students protest HS ban on ‘do-rags’: ‘They’re trying to take away who we are’

Students protest HS ban on ‘do-rags’: ‘They’re trying to take away who we are’
Image: YouTube video screen grab

[Ed. – Don’t rags]

Students at a Pasadena, Calif. high school staged a walkout Wednesday morning to protest a district-wide dress code than bans do-rags — headscarves traditionally worn by black men.

The students, who attend John Muir High School, feel the ban stems from the assumption that do-rags are gang-related — and that the policy criminalizes young black men, according to the Twitter account for the school’s Black Student Union.

But the teens disagree, saying the scarves are part of the black cultural identity, as they’re used to create and protect a hairstyle known as “waves.” In fact, do-rags are also known as “wave caps.” Any association with gang activity is an old stereotype, they insist.

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“They’re trying to take away who we are — our culture,” said student Felicia Davis to the Pasadena Star-News. “It is them trying to cleanse our ethnic beauty.”

“Them” in this scenario is the Pasadena School District, which issues the Pasadena Unified dress code, a policy that prohibits “hats, caps and other head coverings” from being worn indoors. The students feel the ban unfairly targets males particularly, as females are allowed to wear head coverings.

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