sexism in school dress codes

A superintendent at a public high school in Noble, Oklahoma was under fire for her recent outbursts regarding the students girls attending the school. She publicly shamed girls wearing “inappropriate” attire, calling them sluts and even made girls bend over as a tool to measure if dresses were too short. Yesterday, the school board decided she could keep her job with just a slap on the wrist; she has to seek “professional development”. I was utterly disgusted when the news first broke about this woman, particularly after hearing that she purportedly told one student, “If you wear inappropriate clothes, and you’re bending over in front of a guy in the locker room or something, and he reaches up and touches, it’s not his fault because you’re the one wearing the showing clothes.”

Newsflash: Boys have brains. Men have brains, too. We are doing them a great disservice by perpetuating the myth that they have no control over their impulses. It’s insulting, really. Guys, you should be insulted by the way they talk about you like you all are some kind of animal that goes around, pillaging and plundering because you just don’t know any better.

It’s summertime and the temperatures are scorching and tank tops and shorts provide slight relief from the heat. How about instead of indulging this outdated idea of men not being able to control where their eyes wander, we teach boys to respect everyone. This means keeping your eyes (and hands) to yourself. Girls aren’t “asking for it” just because they are donning a skirt. Let’s cut the slut- shaming shit, please. Your clothes don’t determine your worth as a person, so superintendents et al., please stop masking your sexism by touting your moral obligations and standards. We should be busting harmful myths, not preserving them. This is what school administrators should focus on, not the finger width of a tank top sleeve.

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