Staff Editorial: Coaching dress code goes too far with elimination of signature cowboy hat

Dress codes have long been some of the most controversial topics at a high school. Many believe that attire is a message of self expression and identity. While many students have long disagreed with some of the rules in our school dress code as applied to students, some players and fans are disappointed that the girls varsity basketball coach has been instructed to not wear his signatures cowboy hat while coaching games at WHS
The head girls basketball coach is known for being a “country boy” and likes to wear his cowboy hat everywhere he goes. This year he was asked by our school not to wear it because it was too distracting. However, other coaches wear hats to coach. One could argue that the coaching dress code goes against his freedom of expression.
I believe that if his/her clothes are appropriate and not truly harming anyone then it should be fine. Many coaches wear hats while coaching and, at some points, they might even take them off and throw them down or swing them up in the air to show their emotion. A hat is a hat and does not harm anyone, so why is it such a big deal that a coach chooses to wear it? His hat is a part of who he is and how he was raised.
Although the season has just started, almost every referee and even the crowd has asked where his hat is and commented that he was unrecognizable without it. The crowd even started chanting “we want the hat back, bring back the hat,” during the Warsaw vs. Weaubleau championship for consolation.
A coach is supposed to look professional or at least look presentable when it’s game day, but the wearing of a cowboy hat is not necessarily an unprofessional look. While the real world does require a certain level of professionalism when it comes to dress, doctors wear a white coat, lawyers wear a suit to court and even fast food workers wear a uniform, the dress code for a high school coach need not be so strict as to limit his personality that he brings to the team. Our coach’s unique style is what makes him, and WHS girls basketball, special and recognizable and does not shed a negative light on the team.
Needless to say, the hat did not cause any problems whatsoever and there is no legitimate reason as to why it got taken away.