Visit Us On FacebookVisit Us On TwitterVisit Us On YoutubeCheck Our Feed
September 23, 2017

School dress codes are slut shaming? Give me a break.

It must be brutally hot in Quebec, Canada. That’s why Lindsey Stocker, an 11th grade student at Beaconsfield High School, decided to protest her school’s dress code policy.

Lindsey
Image: The Gazette

She was sent home last week because her jean shorts were deemed too short by not one, but two, school principals. Per the school’s dress code, shorts must be at least finger-tip length. As evidenced in the photo, the shorts seem to ride up a bit in the front. Not a capital offense, but still a grievous fashion don’t and still against the school dress code.

Did Lindsey apologize and correct the fashion faux pas?  No, she showed her indignation by taking her complaint to the media and hanging a protest sign in a school hallway.

Shorts photo
Image from Facebook.

“There’s a huge rape culture that educational systems aren’t really paying attention to,” the teen said to a Canadian news outlet.  “They’re actually contributing to it without realizing it.”

Whatt??!

No, honey. Rape culture is the rape and murder of two teenage girls in India who went into a field to relieve themselves. Rape culture is what happens when a judge goes easy on a rapist because his underage victim was sexually promiscuous in the past.

This ain’t rape culture. These are rules your school, and countless other schools, set to create an environment that is professional and conducive to learning. No offense intended, but you would probably get fired for wearing booty shorts to work, unless of course you worked at Hooters, but that’s a different feminist fight. By the same token, a guy would be unemployed if he showed up with his pants hanging below hips.

Quite frankly, Lindsey’s ensemble wouldn’t pass muster at my 14-year-old daughter’s Texas school either, and unlike Quebec, it’s 95 degrees and humid when the kids walk home from school. Our dress code applies to students, both male and female, and teachers. All shorts, for males and females, must be at least finger-tip length, and yes, it’s tough to find that length on retailers’ racks, but it’s not impossible. No underwear – thongs or boxers – sticking out from the back of pants. No muscle shirts for the guys, no spaghetti straps for the girls. No big deal.

Lindsey’s school didn’t buy her argument. In a statement, administrators said, “It needs to be clear that this is always an opportunity for the school to make it a learning situation for the students… To sensitize them about hypersexualization, which is often a topic that is discussed and the students are well aware of.”

Hypersexualization is a disturbing and growing trend that accents sexuality in women and girls. This trend, which is perpetuated by media and marketing, presents physical appearance and the ability to titillate as the most important elements of female worth.

It’s pretty awful what society does to our girls and teens, but it’s even worse when these young ladies buy into the lie and hypersexualize themselves. Girls, that really hot junior may notice your cleavage when he looks down your blouse as you lean toward him; that really creepy sophomore may notice, too. Which one gets permission to view you as a sexual object? Which one will get blasted for being a pervert?

“Yes, it sucks to be sexualized when you don’t want to be,” said one social media commenter. “However, exposing your body just emphasizes your sexuality… You can’t have your breasts half hanging out and then get mad because people are noticing them.”

Image: Tumblr
Image: Tumblr

Lindsey isn’t the only teen linking school dress codes to slut shaming. Schools across the U.S. are facing backlash for their stances on leggings, bra straps, tight clothing, shorts and other fashion choices. The chief complaint is that these dress codes single out girls and “shame” them for their bodies.  Many of the young dress code critics express anger at school officials who deem their clothing “a distraction.” (Maybe my attention span is entirely too short, but I tend to get a little distracted if I can see a person’s butt cheeks or crack – male or female.)

It’s tough for today’s parents to combat a culture that encourages our girls to show more skin than soul, but even the great Muhammad Ali, who could knock out any threat, faced this challenge. His daughter, Hana, recounts her father’s response to her book, “More Than A Hero: Muhammad Ali’s Life Lessons Through His Daughter’s Eyes:”

“When we finally arrived, the chauffeur escorted my younger sister, Laila, and me up to my father’s suite. As usual, he was hiding behind the door waiting to scare us. We exchanged many hugs and kisses as we could possibly give in one day.

My father took a good look at us. Then he sat me down on his lap and said something that I will never forget. He looked me straight in the eyes and said, “Hana, everything that God made valuable in the world is covered and hard to get to.

Where do you find diamonds? Deep down in the ground, covered and protected.
Where do you find pearls? Deep down at the bottom of the ocean, covered up and protected in a beautiful shell.
Where do you find gold? Way down in the mine, covered over with layers and layers of rock. You’ve got to work hard to get to them.”

He looked at me with serious eyes. “Your body is sacred. You’re far more precious than diamonds and pearls, and you should be covered, too.”

Dad in booty shortsAnd if that doesn’t work, maybe we should all do what Utah dad Scott Mackintosh did when he and his teen daughter didn’t agree on clothing choices.

His shorts don’t meet dress code requirements, either. Keep your eyes to yourself.

 

 


save-50-percent-as-a-friend-of-roadkill-goldfish-2

6 Comments on School dress codes are slut shaming? Give me a break.

  1. In general, I agree with you here. My only issue with the dress code policies are the sometimes arbitrary measures they use. In general, we should be teaching all kids that it’s appropriate to have all our parts sufficiently covered up in the school environment. What I take issue with are rules being overly prescriptive. Let’s take tank tops straps being 2 inches. Why not just say no spaghetti straps? Or even just no tank tops? You know how hard it is to find a tank (that my daughter would pair with another shirt anyway) that is 2 inches? Seriously I had to go to the internet to find it and it wasn’t really clear from the description that it was 2 inches. Then there’s the whole issue of the sport shorts. Personally I don’t find those to be an equivalent of booty shorts or too short if you get the right size and I don’t think they’re a big deal…BUT if a school wants to restrict those, I’m totally fine….but then don’t allow the cheerleaders to wear their uniforms all day at school when they are shorter than the sport shorts. Then lets go to the whole finger tip length thing. That is completely random depending on how long a kid’s arms and hands are. Why not just say shorts need to hit at least mid-thigh or longer? Bottom line, I think we can come up with policies that teaches the right idea without having to whip out a ruler.

  2. When I went to school in Texas in the late 70s and early 80s we didn’t even have air conditioning. We had to wear pants or dresses to school; not shorts. My kids are in school in Texas now; wear shorts to school and take jackets and sweaters because the classrooms are so cold. I think a lot of our money for the school system is tied up in the electric bill.

  3. No it isn’t shaming them for their body it is trying to teach them to respect their self. We had the same dress codes when I was in school. I had no desire to wear short shorts in school or the things the other girls were wearing. 99% of the time I was wearing jeans and a t-shirt. Guess what I had just as many or more guys that talked to me and dated just as much as the others. And guys showed me much more respect and looked out for me way more than they did the girls who dressed and acted slutty. Even after I got out of school I didn’t wear all that and a ton of make up. Guys find women who respect their self and who are confident a lot more attractive when it comes to looking for someone to really have a relationship with.

  4. I agree with you. A lot of these young women think of what they wear is okay because of the hyper-sexualization that is around them. Her shorts were too short and wouldn’t pass muster at our school too. It goes with the leggings as pants. I have no problem with leggings as long as the ass is covered. Finger tip length isn’t to the top of the thumb but to the tip of the middle finger. These girls have no idea what what rape culture really is. The athletes who get away with video taping a girl who had too much to drink while they are sexually assaulting her, or the girls who are gang raped in India and hung in a grove of trees. That is rape culture. They need a clue in what they are really trying to express.

  5. If it’s so hot outside, why is she wearing a big sweatshirt? Not buying that excuse. Sometimes I wonder if people make such a big deal over stuff just to get media attention.

Let's talk. Join the conversation.