A commentary by James Edwin Gibson
Neckties are a traditional Father’s Day gift. And, I am submitting this article on the day before Father’s Day. But, I think we need to eliminate the tradition of buying, giving, and wearing neckties.
It remains common for persons to wear neckties to church, business functions, etc. Why does a man wear a necktie? Do neckties serve any useful purpose?
A colorful tie can be attractive, maybe even look elegant. However, wearing clothing just for appearance seems a waste, especially in an age when conservation and being environmentally friendly are emphasized. Ties seem pretentious and worldly—not what God or Christ or common sense would advocate.
Perhaps neckties originated from scarves worn in winter around the face to help protect people from cold and/or windy weather. Nicely tied, stylish scarves worn when weather conditions warranted them may have been the precursor of the necktie. But the ties commonly worn now, tied the way they are typically tied, serve no useful purpose that I comprehend.
Still, the wearing of neckties in public is a common practice in the United States and many other countries among persons in leadership positions in business, government, and religion. Certain formal parties and some restaurants also require a tie. In fact, so-called “black tie affairs” may require a black tie or more specifically a black bow tie, a tuxedo, and/or other formal apparel. Indeed, ties are traditional in some circles.
Neckties cost money to purchase, take time to tie, may feel uncomfortable around one’s neck, and are a potential safety hazard if they flap around loosely and get caught in machinery.
In contrast to ties, much of the clothing we wear serves a useful purpose. Shoes protect our feet. Undergarments, socks, pants, shirts, hats, and gloves provide us warmth, protect us from sunburn, and help guard our skin from injuries that might otherwise result as we contact various objects. But I submit that ties need to be either recycled into something more useful or discarded.
Personally, I have not worn a tie in several years and probably will not do so again unless I am in a situation where someone else requests it, such as for a job where wearing one is mandatory. Do you agree with me that wearing a tie is unnecessary, potentially unsafe, and a waste of time, as well as a waste of the money spent to buy it?
I think it is time to end the tradition of wearing ties.
If we love and care for everyone regardless of circumstances, neither we nor they need to display a necktie as a status symbol or for any other reason that I can think of. In fact, try to avoid focusing on ties others wear.
Instead, focus your eyes on their faces, smile at them, and establish eye contact. Our actions, words, and our other apparel can suitably convey information about us to one another.
If you are required to wear a tie at work, please try to get the decision maker(s) for your workplace to read this column and to change the policy requiring employees to wear ties. I think it would be great for everyone to avoid spending money buying ties and time tying them. Dedicate that money and time toward more productive and more enjoyable living. Will you do it?
This piece is being submitted to Craft News Report on June 15, 2019. It is based on a chapter in the author’s book True Christianity: It May Not Be What You Think. The author has also written similar articles for other websites in the past.
Copyright © 2019 James Edwin Gibson. James is the author of the books True Christianity: It May Not Be What You Think (2014, second edition 2015, third edition 2017) and Several True (I Think) Stories: Can Truth Be Stranger Than Fiction? (2016, second edition 2017). You may contact James at email@example.com regarding this column. James thanks his friend Paul for publishing it on his website, thanks you all for reading, and hopes you all enjoy God’s blessings!