The simple ribbon of cloth we call the necktie has come under brutal assault in the Spanish Parliament by socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez under the ridiculous guise of “saving energy.” At a news conference, he said, “I’d like you all to note that I am not wearing a tie; this means we can all save from an energy point of view.”
The socialist then requested that all public officials, and also those in the private sector, stop wearing neckties to implement the “energy saving measures” that are so important to Spain. Such measures lead us to ask if the jacket is next in line. It also suggests that the Spanish official has an ulterior motive.
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The same debate curiously erupted in the French Parliament between conservative deputies and the far-left France Unbowed (LFI) party. What triggered the debate was the misbehavior of some LFI younger members, who appear almost always tieless and casually dressed.
The tieless MPs provoked conservative republican MP Eric Ciotti to send a letter to the Parliament speaker asking him to enforce the rule mandating that formal dress be worn in Parliament. He noted that formal dress is the “mark of respect due to our institutions and compatriots.” Indeed, those who do not respect themselves will treat others in a like manner.
Conservative Deputy Renaud Muselier added to the complaint by noting that the disruptive left-wing MPs are dirty and scream everywhere they go. This display lacking personal respect and dignity is undoubtedly reflected in their egalitarian dress.
The liberal LFI party responded with its own letter, saying that clothing does not make a deputy. It further stated that this tie does not represent dressing smartly but implies adhesion to a particular social group. Indeed, while the habit does not make the monk, it indicates that he does identify with the profession’s ideals and will tend to act consistently.
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For this reason, the French Parliament and other legislative bodies insist that their MPs dress appropriately, which has always been taken to mean business suit and tie. Liberal MPs logically seek to adopt a more modern interpretation of this dress code.
However, the debate over the tie is not about energy saving but what the tie symbolizes. The underlying problems socialist Prime Minister Sanchez and the French liberal LFI deputies have go beyond that simple little piece of cloth we call a necktie. Understanding the origin of the necktie, also referred to as a cravat, will shed some light on the subject.
The cravat was first noticed being worn by Croatian mercenaries by the French circa 1630. Enlisted men wore knotted cloths around their necks while officers used fine silks. The French sense of honor, style and elegance quickly adopted it as an addition to their military uniforms and a form of fashion in civil life. Upon seeing the cravat, King Louis XIII was enchanted, and it soon became part of the Parisian Court’s attire.
Born out of a military dress, it was not only adopted by King Louis XIII, but when King Charles II returned to England after years of exile at the French court, he went back wearing the cravat. From there, it spread to the New World.
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Our attire influences our behavior. Even actors are well aware of this truth and practice with certain pieces of clothing that express the part they are to play. Each piece of clothing imparts something of a mentality and has a direct influence over our tendencies. We dress as we think, and we think as we dress.
The way we dress tells a story. Someone dressing in a vulgar, sloppy fashion suggests a similar attitude toward those around us. Those who dress in immoral or revealing clothes show a disregard for modesty and the bad effects it has on others. On the contrary, on those occasions when men dress in a clean, sharp, orderly fashion, wearing pants with defined creases, well-shined shoes and a matching tie, it suggests the person is orderly, clean, responsible and thoughtful. Though dressing well does not determine behavior, it strongly influences our tendencies to behave well.
We are social creatures, and everything about us makes a statement, especially how we dress. Our presentation includes not only clothes but all accessories, hairstyle, fragrance, posture, body language, tone of voice and the energy with which we move and speak.
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Swiss Bank UBS published a forty-four-page dress code stressing the importance of dressing correctly from a study they conducted. Below are a few snippets from this report:
- A garment is a critical form of non-verbal communication.
- A flawless appearance can bring inner peace and a sense of security.
- Adopting impeccable behavior extends to impeccable presentation.
The liberal LFI party’s criticism of the tie confirms this notion of clothing as a social statement. The left turned the issue into a manifestation of class struggle by saying the use of the tie indicates an adhesion to a particular social group. Leftists show that dress sends a message about our duties and social status. They also realize that their disheveled dress sends a message favoring their leftist agenda against established order.
The insistence of the conservative French MP was also correct. Traditionally, neckties have conveyed the idea of authority, dignity and capability. It can show respect for others and improve self-esteem.
Wearing a necktie commands respect, and liberals hate this because of its noble military origins. It symbolizes tradition, honor and order in an elegant manner. It embodies everything a leftist seeks to destroy by implementing vulgar, egalitarian customs without distinctions for excellence and decorum.
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Eliminating the necktie has nothing to do with “saving energy” and everything to do with destroying wholesome Christian traditions that aid in the practice of virtue. In effect, getting rid of the tie would destroy one more stone in the foundation upon which Christian civilization was built.
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