Reader’s Forum: Sept. 1, 2015


Modesty and Mormonism

One thing has long bothered me about BYU and many members of the church in general. Modesty is such a simple standard – most of us know from frequent repetition of the rules as well as just by instinct what is modest and what is not. Yet so many at BYU go to such great lengths to stretch the rules so far that they are invariably broken that it is sickening. How many times can you advertise “leggings are not pants” before people actually stop wearing them as pants? Just because it’s fashionable to trounce around in disturbingly tight clothes doesn’t mean guys like it. What might be worse are the shorts and skirts – there are so many that look like maybe if you squint and exaggerate greatly you could say they go to the knees, but they really don’t. Many these days don’t even attempt to go to the knees. And transparent or holey sleeves? I don’t think those count. And please don’t get me started on necklines.

I am by no means a fashion police; I just find very sad, even disturbing, the number of people who try to bend or just plain disobey the rules. I think those that willfully dress immodestly are half-Mormons. You may think “half” is a bit unfair, since it is just a small, simple rule, but that is exactly my point: if you are unwilling to follow God’s small commandments, what will you do when He asks you to do something big?

BYU has amplified the problem in a nasty way. For some reason the falsehood has become nearly universally accepted that when we exercise it’s fine to wear pretty much nothing. BYU sports teams are often very immodest and I really think there’s no excuse for that. Yes, you do get sweaty when you exercise, but an extra bit of fabric here and there will not really make any difference. Take women’s volleyball, for instance. Is there really any reason for those uniforms that are so multifarious, immodest and embarrassing? Poor girls!

I realize there are many who are always modest, and I applaud and am grateful for those people. For those who bend the rules and find excuses to be immodest, you may say it’s none of my business, but it’s still both disgusting and disheartening.

Scott Zylstra, Claremont, California

Drop-off drama

Moving in to the dorms can be stressful, and a poorly supported move-in is even worse; but being unpleasant during an already stressful time takes the cake. On Tuesday, August 25, 2015, I drove into the parking lot by the Creamery in North Heritage Halls to pick up my daughter.  I pulled into an empty space – not a stall, and definitely at a red curb – just like the other 4 billion parents that day helping their kids move in, as I had the day prior. This “gentleman” who was obviously not a student, but an employee, raced over to tell me to move.  I was happy to comply, and even made a joke about having received a parking ticket the day before. He snarkily replied that he knew I had received a ticket and that I had been parked illegally for more than 5 hours. To which I kindly replied to the contrary. It was only 2.5 hours, and my daughter had been sick so I was happy to pay the fine. He responded obstinately that he knows I was there for 5 hours because he had arrived at work at 9 a.m. that morning and I was already parked there. To which I responded that simply wasn’t true. My daughter’s move in time was between 10 and 11 a.m. and we didn’t arrive until 10:40 a.m. because she was feeling unwell. He continued to call me out and suggest that I was lying. I left immediately.
Why am I sharing this? Because I was simply shocked and dumbfounded at the professed moral outrage and complete lack of integrity shown by an employee of BYU. Not only did he accuse me of dishonesty, but he did it with a bold face lie.  Does the honor code not apply to employees as well? I’m a big girl, and I’ll get over this, but I fear the man in the parking lot will continue to suffer his snarky and unpleasant ways.
If the bigger picture is the lack of strategic planning for dorm drop-offs then hopefully BYU Housing will find a better solution in the future. Life is too short to pick fights with emotional parents parting ways with their children.
Angela McIllece, Honolulu, HI
Print Friendly, PDF & Email