Though I respect Bradley Belasco’s opinion in the article “Dress Code,” I disagree. The NBA dress code is not a matter of limiting players’ freedom, it is a matter of looking professional at work. NBA players get paid to play basketball, it is their job. I can’t understand why they wouldn’t want to look professional. Everyone else in the “real” world is required to look presentable at work, so what makes basketball players different? This is not aimed at offending the “hip-hop culture.” People go to basketball games to see the games, not a fashion show.
Belasco asks, “In the end, can the league change a thug into a gentleman by putting a suit on him?” You would think that these players would want to make a good impression on their young fans and dress appropriately. What kind of message is this so-called thug-wear sending to children? Not a very good one.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.