The Instigator
thurevel
Con (against)
The Contender
dipper
Pro (for)

Uniforms in public schools

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/16/2017 Category: Fashion
Updated: 10 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 820 times Debate No: 101061
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (0)

 

thurevel

Con

Honestly, school uniforms suck. Many people think that they are wonderful, but really, they're not. Here's why:
1. Itchy and uncomfortable
2. Expensive
3. Some children may be allergic to the material used to make the uniform
4. (This is a big one...) YOU CANNOT EXPRESS YOUR EMOTIONS OR PERSONALITY!!!!
5. You wouldn't be able to tell any one apart from behind! ("Clara!" Sheila yelled. *girl Sheila thinks is Clara slowly turns around* (Not Clara but the Wicked Witch of the West) -(o_o)- "Sorry...")
6. Sure, in schools stuff should be neat and orderly, but not SO orderly that you can't tell anyone apart... I mean, come on.
My school has been around a little longer than 1987, we have never had uniforms, and hopefully never will. (No latex, no polyester)
dipper

Pro

I happily accept this debate and send warmest regards to my honored opponent.

First, let me cede the initial premise stated by my opponent - school uniforms suck. This is a universal truth, and I don't think there's anything that can make school uniforms not suck. However, the same can be said about many aspects of high school, and what can also be said about those self-same aspects is that while they may suck, the benefits outweigh the suckiness. During the course of this debate, I will prove that school uniforms are a lesser evil which should be tolerated and encouraged, even in public schools, in service to the greater good.

My opponent states that school uniforms are "itchy and uncomfortable". Even if I ceded this point, the benefits would still outweigh the inconvenience, but I don't think that these are necessarily inevitable truisms. As a student who was subjected to the formalwear of a catholic school uniform, I can attest that one mostly gets used to it over time. I would frequently come home from school and spend the rest of the evening still wearing my button up shirt, grey slacks and black shoes while playing with my toys or banging away at my computer. Even with the option right in front of me, I didn't bother to get changed because I was simply used to wearing them. The exceptions, of course, were the tie and the shoes - very uncomfortable indeed. But students spend the vast majority of their time sitting, so the shoes weren't too much of an issue, and the fact that I would take off my tie at the end of the day may have actually had a positive psychological impact on me. I associated wearing the tie with the "serious business" of school, and taking it off with "business is over now, relaxing is here". One generally wants a student to think of school as a place to get serious about learning, so such a benefit can't be overstated.

My opponent's second argument is that uniforms are expensive. There's some truth to this; most uniform stores aren't too shy about gauging their customers a bit when they know that those customer have no choice but to pay it. However, are they really that much more expensive than regular street clothes? I would assert that they're not. For one thing, you don't have to buy them as often - once a year tops, and even then only if puberty is playing some very mean tricks on the child in question. For another, previous uniforms can be handed down to little siblings or sold to younger students to recoup some of the money, which is less possible with street clothes because they'd be "out of fashion" after a time.

Which brings us to another point my opponent made, that uniforms suppress individual expression (I'll get to the allergy point in a moment). This is, by definition, obviously true, but not necessarily a bad thing. Expressing emotions and personality aren't always appropriate in school. A student is there to receive information, not transmit it, and it is hard enough to cover all the course material in a 45 minute class without the distractions of students' processing one anothers' nonverbal clothing messages. Compounding that issue is the fact that some of those messages can be in direct opposition to one another, leading to taunts and fights. And the messages might make statements that students don't want to make, like "I'm too poor to afford the best clothing", making them vulnerable to bullying and teasing. Uniforms eliminate all of these problems in one swoop.

Beyond just the tie, a uniform sets a tone for a person. New military troops often admire themselves in the mirror after putting theirs on for the first time. Firefighters and police officers are always the most recognizable when in uniform. Uniforms command respect, reinforce purpose and ultimately help make people better at what they're doing.

If one is allergic to uniform fabric, that is a special case. I'm quite certain that such a disability could be taken into account, and an alternate material can be used to accommodate the special circumstance.

Lastly, my opponent talks about the difficulty in telling people apart while in uniform. This is, at worst, a small annoyance, and really only affects chance meetings. In classes with assigned seating, one knows where each student is, and in classes without it, one usually sits with their friends anyway. In the lunch hall, people agree in advance where to meet or have a routine established. Missing out on a couple of small conversations (or even perhaps making a new friend because of the misunderstanding?) is a small price to pay for all the benefits a uniform brings to the table.




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Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by dipper 10 months ago
dipper
I win?
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