Chandra Cleveland-Jennings has a brief message: Saggin’ does not project a good image.
She is organizing Saturday’s second annual Rally Against Saggin’ to protest the style of wearing jeans low on the hips to show off underwear. The rally is sponsored by Palmetto Youth Connection, a mentoring organization for teens.
“It makes you look filthy,” Cleveland-Jennings said. “It’s so disgusting when you see it.”
The rally to encourage young people to pull up their pants begins at 9 a.m. at the Benedict College Business Development Center, at 2601 Read St. Young adult role models will speak about the importance of projecting a positive image, and a march will follow Read Street to Two Notch Road to Taylor Street to Harden Street, Cleveland-Jennings said.
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As they march, participants will chant, “Raise your pants. Raise your image,” she said.
The sagging style began nearly 30 years ago to imitate prisoners whose loose clothing and lack of belts resulted in baggy pants. Since then, the style has been popularized through media images such as hip hop artist Marky Mark Wahlberg’s Calvin Klein ads in the 1990s and current rap stars such as Lil Wayne and Soulja Boy.
Sam Johnson, special assistant to Mayor Steve Benjamin, will speak about the importance of presenting a clean-cut image. He questions why anyone would want to follow a fashion style created in prisons.
“This is not something you want people to see you as,” Johnson said.