Mr. Butckovitz [“Flags, Feet and Freedom,” Letters Aug. 22] doesn’t want to look at me barefoot “while eating a dinner that [he] paid for.” Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your perspective), we live in a country where everyone has a right to freedom of expression, and that includes choice of attire, even if unconventional. But contrary to what some may think, we do not have a right to not be offended.
And as to someone not wanting to see bare feet in a restaurant, what’s the difference between seeing bare feet and seeing feet in flip-flops? Just as much of a foot is visible in flip-flops as with bare feet—or does that little thin half-inch strip of rubber between the toes really make all the difference in the world? I think it’s just the idea of bare feet that Mr. Butckovitz has a problem with, not the actual sight—otherwise, he’d be complaining about flip-flop and sandal wearers as well.
Mr. Butckovitz also includes in his letter an absolutely unlikely scenario in which a barefoot person could be injured in a restaurant, and the final result of all the mayhem he describes is that everyone there must be tested for AIDS. His wild speculation is, in a word, ridiculous.
He also states that I don’t quite understand “the real history of the ‘No shirt, No shoes, No service’ dress code,” further explaining that prior to the 1960s, people wore “proper clothing” in public. Actually, I completely understand the history of such arbitrary dress codes. He has a right to his opinion, and perhaps that’s the way he saw it. But I suspect I’m a little older and perhaps was able to observe history from a different perspective. While he spent the ‘60s as a “barefoot hippie” (not that there’s anything wrong with that), I was working as an accountant in a business while trying to support a family. Those signs that started proliferating back then had nothing to do with economics and had everything to do with politics.
— Kriss Sands