The Banning Of Long Hair

What is it about male hair that personifies some sort of statement? While women spend more time, energy and money on their hair it doesn’t nearly get the same attention a single hairstyle on a man gets. There seem to be political connotations always attached to male hair for as far as I can remember. It wasn’t too far back that people in Jordan were looking to ban the emergence of spiky hair and the excessive hair gel that comes with it. In Iran, there’s been a ban on western haircuts, which I assume is represented by anything seen on the show FRIENDS.

So recently, North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, whose health has been speculated about for some time now, has issued a ban on long hair for men. What I found interesting is that he did this during a football match. Allegedly, while watching a football match between two Korean universities, Kim Jong Il wasn’t too pleased with some of the male players on his alma mater’s team that sported long hair:

According to an insider, after realizing that several of the Kim Il-sung University players were sporting long hair, Kim declared it to “look disgusting,” and said “I can’t tell if this is men’s soccer or women’s soccer.”

His mood grew steadily worse until the end of the first half, at which point he announced he would not be watching the rest of the match. Whether he was actually watching from the stadium or on television is unknown.

Shortly after the incident, a notice was posted in workplaces across the country banning long hair for men. Staff at Kim Il-sung University were witnessed carrying out particularly stringent checks. [source]

I don’t know how accurate the news is as it was reported by a Japanese paper, but a similar campaign took place three years ago.

If true I think it’s pretty fascinating from a public policy point of view.

Imagine the amount of centralized power in such a country. Where policy-making doesn’t have to go through various revisions, and channels and parliaments, rejections and approvals and evaluations and determinations, until it’s spat out by the massive bureaucracy called government.

The guy was simply annoyed by something he saw at a football match, and moments later, poof, there’s a new policy being implemented.

No red tape.

How many times have you seen something annoying in your everyday life and thought, man, if I had the political power. Just driving around Jordan I’m always mentally arresting people in my head.

[via: FP]


  • You know, few days ago I saw an obesed young man wearing an incredibly low-rise pants here in Amman, at some point he tried to pick something from the ground and I had to see his naked, hairy & ugly @$$!

    At the precise moment, I wished form the bottom of my heart for some police officers to brutally beat the crap out of him, just for the lolz. πŸ™‚

    Screw banning hair styles guys, I WANT LAWS FOR BANNING WEARING THAR GAY TREND!!

  • I dont’ understand what bothers them in men’s haircuts…. let men becmome a bit more creative, and look a bit less identical from each other!!!
    Bas anyway…If i had the choice… I’d personally ban people from using their mobiles if they speak louder than a certain volume in public…. forcing me to listen to a personal /stupid conversation… or put their irritating ringtones very loud out in public…. Many things are worth banning actually… mmmm….. and that’s how democratic systems work!! :p

  • Do you have long hair Naseem?
    you know, I’ve never seen a picture of you (knowing it was you). post one!
    if you do have long hair, your opinion is not neutral on this issue. I challenge you to a picture! πŸ™‚

  • i’ll intercede … nope he definitely doesn’t have long hair so he’s not bias. and whats “WEARING THAR GAY TREND!!” ? i need to know so i can start pissing people off.
    The whole idea of banning something that is for no detriment to you personally is feeding the power hungry little dictator in you and allowing the real one to go unchecked. The fact that people are so enthusiastic about banning things that marginally annoy them just proves the amount of hypocrisy that they have when they try to defend any freedom issue (which they bitch about a lot, just try blocking facebook and see how they would complain endlessly)
    protecting other people’s freedoms protects your own ! learn that people

  • bambam: I’m not encouraging people to start banning clothing trends or hair styles out of mere whims, but IMHO: some stupid stuff like the low-rise pants, it needs to go .. ASAP! It’s for gay ******* who like to get ****** up their ***** , hands down.

    PS: I approve all kinds of personal freedom, however when your “personal freedom” make me sick of hours after seeing some disgusting hairy @$$, I’m gonna beat you to a pulp .. nothing personal.

    PPS: I made a typo, sue me! πŸ™‚

  • “The whole idea of banning something that is for no detriment to you personally is feeding the power hungry little dictator in you ”

    It is in the genes bam.

    “protecting other peopleÒ€ℒs freedoms protects your own ! learn that people”

    They are selfish.


  • Well, everyone is free to like it or not but… to ban it? I’m not sure. For males under 18 years of age I think it’s not about statement wala batteekh, it’s a phase they go through for some reason I don’t choose to know and eventually they MOW it off. As for males over 18 I think, sometimes, it has to do with the Hippie/ Bohemian look. Sometimes it’s the only thing Bohemian about them I have to say

    Piece of advice for those guys: Bald heads can never go wrong. Well, most of the time.

  • Freedom and nothing but freedom.. I do not want to arrest anyone, I just need to know why some men have long or relatively longer finger nails.. I think some barber in the 80s started it to draw that thin line after combing each side towards the center of the backhead. Why did it start? Most importantly, why is it still there? πŸ™‚

  • I love guys with long hair and an ear piercing ! If I ever were to be a dictator in one of the Arab countries, I would make it the law for men to have long straight / wavy hair and one ear piercing. (and I would expel all ugly men from my country, too!)

  • Dear old Kim John II!

    I bet you that by this time next year, he’s going to be banning underwear or long eyelashes or sneezing, or something.

    The societal significance of hair is pretty interesting. I once stumbled upon a pretty grim human being (she could never quite shut up about what the “perfect” Christian couple should be like, so you can already guess how abysmal this whole thing was from the start), and she opined on how having long hair is desirable for a woman, because that way, it’s easy for her husband to grab her by it when he wants to beat her.

    Some people are just special like that.

  • hahahaha, When I was in high school it was made illegal in my home state to wear baggy pants that displayed one’s boxers/undies. No centralized power necessary!

  • i think its gross. what happen to the days in Amman when men where masculine? last time i went for a visit most of the guys looked gay. they need to put a ban on guys hugging guys and holding hands. plus they should not put all that gel in their hair if they do not plan on showering everyday. maybe they should focus more on hygene rather than their poor sense of style. XO D πŸ™‚

  • Hair grows naturally and may be a sign of good taste – the long, the better. Those insane and stupid leaders are completely mistaken, besides being anti-human rights. Long hair on men should be related to sacrifice, beauty and good choice. Period.

Your Two Piasters: