Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Oh No! Haircuts?

January 8, 1965

Practically nothing escapes the pressure for conformity in modern society and haircuts are no exception.

The first indication of the possible trend toward bowl-on-the-head haircuts for all men came on Nov. 13 when a 15-year-old Connecticut boy was suspended from school for wearing his hair in bangs, Beatle-fashion, though the New York Times reports he did have his hair trimmed in the back.

He refused to change his hair cut and was backed by his father who testified, "My son isn't even a Beatle fan. He just likes to wear his hair in bangs."

Nearly a month later his parents tried unsuccessfully to file a complaint with the State Commission on Civil Rights. The Board of Education voted to uphold his suspension.

Then it happened in Columbus.

John R. Dunno, a South High School sophomore was suspended Dec. 21 by Principal Harold Washburn when he refused to change his Beatle-style hairdo to a more conventional one. The principal said the style was "bizarre" and would tend to disrupt the school's tranquility.

Dunno's mother went to court to protect her son's right to wear an independent hair style. She filed a suit against the Columbus Board of Education asking that her son be allowed to keep his hairdo.

After negotiations on both sides, Dunno returned to school Monday with a "compromise" haircut--he combed his hair off his forehead and shaved off his sideburns to conform to the "norm."

We hope educators' sudden demand for uniform haircuts is based on their concern for easier educational penetration of the cranium, rather than social acceptance insurance.

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