Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Quickies: From The “Obvious Means Overlooked” Dept.

     Here’s the latest “outrage against self-expression:”

     A South Carolina teenager was sent home from school recently after she refused to change her T-shirt — which bore the tongue-in-cheek phrase “Nobody Knows I’m a Lesbian,” and was deemed “offensive and distracting” and in violation of the school’s dress code.

     “I was told to change my shirt or go home, so I went home because I wasn’t going to allow him to tell me I can’t wear a shirt that shows who I am,” Brianna Popour, 18, tells Yahoo Parenting through a Facebook message, apparently referring to either the principal or assistant principal of Chesnee High School in Chesnee.

     Popour, who says she came out as a lesbian “two or three years ago,” was able to return to school the next day, to what she says has been much support, except from the administrator who disciplined her. “He hasn’t apologized. He won’t even look at me,” she says, adding, “Today I wore a shirt that says, ‘Keep Calm and Kiss Girls.’”

     As is usual these days, the school’s dress code bans clothing which is “distracting, revealing, overly suggestive or otherwise disruptive,” as well as clothing which is “immodest, obscene, profane, lewd, vulgar, indecent or offensive.” To be offensive, an article of clothing merely has to offend someone – anyone – no reasons proscribed and no lower bound on numbers. Nevertheless, I’ll bet you a dollar to a doughnut that the school takes serious flak over this, possibly up to the point where the administrator at issue is compelled to grovel publicly to the local chapter of Split-Lickers-R-Us.

     Yet any school in this situation has a simple, all-inclusive remedy, one that was used successfully for many years in virtually every school in America: mandatory uniforms. Uniforms suppress invidious competition among the students. They also free parents from having to buy oodles of fashionably expensive and quickly out-of-style duds for their endlessly demanding and immutably ungrateful offspring. Needless to say, a school uniform code would not allow T-shirts, much less T-shirts with sexually explicit or suggestive slogans on them.

     So: Will Chesnee High School adopt mandatory uniforms to head off further controversies of this sort? Don’t bet on it.

1 comment:

Bruce said...

Uniforms? Why that would be common sense. Not much of that going around these days.