New Jersey Middle School Bans Little Sluts From Wearing Strapless Dresses
A middle school principal in New Jersey has decided to send a message to the eighth grade girls who are gearing up for their eighth grade dance: don’t dress like little sluts.
Obviously, that’s not what she said, but that’s the message she is sending by banning strapless dresses because — in her words — the boys will find it distracting:
A New Jersey middle school principal has upset parents for saying girls could not wear strapless dresses to an eighth grade dance because, she said, they’d distract the boys.
“She said strapless dresses … are age inappropriate,” Charlotte Nijenhuis, 50, from Whitehouse Station, N.J., told ABCNews.com about her conversation with Readington Middle School’s principal, Sharon Moffat.
Moffat sent out a letter this month, restricting girls from wearing dresses without straps to their eighth grade formal.
“Young gentleman are encouraged to wear collared shirts and trousers,” Moffat said in the letter. ”Young ladies should wear a skirt, dress with straps or a dressy pants outfit.”
Nijenhuis, whose daughter is an eighth grader at the school, said she challenged Moffat’s strapless-dress ban. When the principal told her the dresses would distract male students, [Nijenhuis] said, ”Distracting [them] from what? It’s a sexist comment.”
Dressy pants outfit? Are they going on job interviews or to a school dance? I mean, really.
Look, Sharon — I know you think you’re helping, but you’re not. What you’re doing, in reality, is reinforcing rape culture. Rape culture tells girls that they need to watch what they wear, where they go, and how they act, and fails to teach young boys about female agency and humanity — that young women are people who are to be treated with respect, not like sexual objects.
Rape culture also treats young men as if they are animals — creatures who cannot help but see young women as sexual objects, rather than trusting those young men that already know that young women are to be respected and treated as human, and reaching out to those young men who don’t yet know (or who are expressing their burgeoning masculinity in an unhealthy way) and making an effort to teach them.
Eighth grade is precisely the age that parents and teachers should be breaking the pattern of social conditioning that treats young men as slaves to their desires and young women as fanning the flames of those desires. Eighth grade is not the age to tell young women to quit dressing like whores — Sharon.
One student, 14-year-old Claudine Nijenhuis (the daughter of the woman taking the challenge against the dress code straight to the school board) totally gets it:
“Basically by saying ‘it distracts the boys’ you’re also saying that it is our fault on how they control their own behavior,” the teenager wrote in a letter to the principal. “I will still be attending the dinner dance function, but I will also be wearing a dress with no straps.”
I’d say, “You go, girl,” but it’s not 1995, so I”ll just say, “Go ahead with your bad self.”
People still say that, right?
Imani Gandy (ABL)
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