Over the past years, I have noticed that men with jewelery are getting viewed differently than males who do not have jewelry. When males start putting on earrings, rings, piercings, and so on, they fall under the umbrella of a sort of “gangster” stereotype. This can cause these men to have disadvantages in society compared to regular men. On the other hand, men with jewelry can also be viewed as “cool”, and this can lead them to get more popular and make more friends.
When asked about his opinion on men wearing jewelry, Ryan Correll, a West Ranch High math teacher, told JSR, “Well, when I see a student on the first day of school and I see that he is wearing some sort of jewelry, I imagine that the student will be disruptive to the class and will not be able to follow the course I am teaching.”
Not only can jewelry affect men’s appearance in school, but it can affect men when being interviewed for jobs. Ken Striplin, the city manager for the City of Santa Clarita, explained to JSR, “When I am interviewing a male who needs a job and I see that he is wearing jewelry for style, I picture him as a slacker. I feel like he won’t work as hard and become lazy. These men give off a thug-like vibe.” Although there are many negatives of jewelry, there are also positives.
On the other hand, in teenage environments, many boys view jewelry as a stairway to popularity. They believe that by wearing earrings, rings, or piercings, they will look tougher and cooler. With these items, many say that they have befriended more people and have been given a sense of prestige. Zachary Van Bennekum, freshman at West Ranch High, told JSR, “Yes it definitely has [brought me popularity]. Before I got my ears pierced, I still did have friends and I was somewhat popular. However, after I got my earrings, my popularity rocketed up along with the amount of friends I had.”
Although there will always be controversy about jewelry on males, it should ultimately be up to them to decide. Will they sacrifice a good, “right” image of themselves for popularity, or decline fame for a clean perception of themselves that may be beneficial for the future? Once they do decide, they should respect and embrace their own choices.