Steve Marr Blog

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Aug 20

Allow Political Shirts?

Posted by: Steve Marr

Tagged in: Untagged 

Goodyear Tire Company created a bit of a stir when establishing a policy regarding what type of messages employees may wear into company facilities.  The controversy arose because the company established specific acceptable and unacceptable criteria. Some examples:

 Acceptable                                                                 Unacceptable

Black lives matter (BLM)                                         Blue lives matter

Lesbian, gay, bisexual                                               All lives matter

Transgender pride (LGBT)                                      MEGA attire

                                                                                       Political affiliated slogans



Messages on apparel raise issues. In the past in my corporate time the issue came up of employees wearing shirts with specific messages, at that time the messages were mostly suggestive or vulgar. We had some conversation regarding how to set guidelines and the more one tried to figure out where to draw the line the more blurry the line became. For example I may want to wear a Christian symbol on a shirt but somebody else may want to wear a satanic symbol that to me is deeply offensive.

At the end of our conversation decision was made to simply not allow any shirts with messages or lettering with the exception of company logoed attire. A decision was made, with some minor controversy, the office was not the place to bring in political or other messages including those I happen to agree with or not.

Paul advised, “But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless.” (Titus  3:9 NIV) My perspective in the past and remains now businesses are wise to establish a policy in advance limiting the types of messages permitted on clothing. You may choose to eliminate all lettering or set some guidelines, but guidelines are important.


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