Arizona father Ira Latham was mocked online after he decided to protest Higley Unified school district's updated dress code policy by attempting to show them a real-time example of what girls could wear to school.
The Higley Unified School District decided to remove certain dress code restrictions that targeted girls, prompting mixed reactions among parents and community members.
While many parents came to the meeting to voice their concerns about the relaxed dress code policy, Latham took an unconventional route. He spoke out against the policy change—by stripping down to a crop top and booty shorts in the middle of the meeting.
You can see what happened in the video below.
Higley Unified district parent strips down, expresses outrage over dress codeyoutu.be
"As a parent, I expect the district to be able to enforce policies that help my children be able to go to class and know how they can contribute to a safe classroom environment, as well as limiting the needless distractions in class."
“Because I have no other way to describe my concerns about this policy, I’ll do an object lesson.”
He then removed his typical adult-sized shorts and a collared t-shirt to reveal an outfit more suited for a teenage girl: short shorts and a crop top that was significantly undersized for him.
“Now, if you ask me, this is inappropriate for a board meeting."
Speaking to news reporters after the video of his stunt, Latham described himself as a parent who is merely "concerned about [his] children and everyone else," adding:
"There's kids in the district and I wanted to make a clear argument. Before, [kids] had some guidance. Now they have no guidance. It's basically, 'Kids, cover your underwear.'"
"The idea that 'they're doing it wrong too so we're doing it wrong' is not a good argument."
He was swiftly mocked online.
The Higley Unified School District is one of several school districts in Arizona that have decided to lift certain dress code restrictions that have historically disproportionately affected girls. The old dress code rules had prohibited students from exposing their "chest, abdomen, or midriff," which are styles more typically associated with females.
Over the years, there has been pushback from students and their advocates against these dress codes, arguing that they unfairly targeted girls.
Boys, they argued, were allowed to wear clothing that also exposed skin, but they were not subjected to the same dress code restrictions. Often, girls were humiliated in front of their peers, disrupting their education and causing emotional distress.
Despite Latham's unusual protest, the school board voted 3-2 to uphold the dress code change, leaving the controversy over the revised policy ongoing.