Thursday, December 11, 2014

Cash for Flesh

I have written before about body-shaming girls at school through the punitive enforcement of lopsided dress codes. I firmly believe that placing a burden on girls to "not distract boys" contributes to the continuation of Rape Culture in our society. In addition, teen girls are already under so much pressure as their bodies mature. They are attacked on every side by false images of digitally enhanced "perfection" that no one could ever attain.

When the schools decide it is their job to "protect" boys from an extra half inch of leg, or a bra strap, they are choosing to put the boys' education before the girls' sense of value and self-worth. Doesn't being shamed negatively impact the girls' learning experience? Doesn't fear of being shamed disctract the girls from focusing on their work?

Twice this Fall I have attended high school concerts where female dancers performed in costumes which would be rejected by school dress codes. They didn't pass the two-finger test. In some cases, there were additionally revealing skirt slits, and/or sleeves cut which revealed "excessive" shoulder. (Like a tank top would.)

To be clear, I was not offended by the outfits themselves. I am offended by a disgusting double standard which allows this to happen.

These girls would be penalized for wearing the very same clothes to school. And yet adults from the school chose and approved these outfits for school performances. In both cases, monies were being raised for charity at these concerts.

So it is acceptable to pay money to see extra flesh for charity. The same extra flesh that would be shamed and censured during the school day. Does anyone else find this just a bit creepy? Maybe a lot?

The only male dancer in the last concert I saw was wearing long pants and a long sleeved shirt. Why do you suppose that was? These costume choice are being made by adults, not students. Who decided it would be appropriate for the females to have abbreviated garb but not the male?

Perhaps I should just be grateful that I was protected from distraction.


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