Good news, Die-Hard Conservatives! In Marshall, Michigan in 2016 sexism and oppression are alive and well!
Here’s how this story plays out. A friend of mine, from high school, Brooke Fields (Marshall High School) posts the image you see here in this post with the quote: “My daughter, who is a straight A student was told by a teacher that she is a distraction to the boys and was told if she didn’t look the way she did, she wouldn’t bother her, but the boys stare at her. If I wouldn’t have been home, my daughter would have had to sit in IN SCHOOL SUSPENSION all day. Marshall Middle School. Marshall, MI. Share if you think the teacher is wrong. Someone needs to investigate.”
Immediately, I’m mad upon seeing this. Madyson, her 13 year old daughter isn’t a rule breaker. She’s a typically ‘by-the-books’ student who does what she’s supposed to do and is clearly focused on her education.
Here are my objections to this ridiculousness:
- Dress codes are completely one sided. There aren’t a bunch of ridiculous specifications for boys set out for what they can wear.
- These dress codes (and this one specifically) aren’t regularly enforced. In Madyson’s case, she had worn this outfit multiple times – just as she is in the above image, without reprimand.
- The teacher told her “You are a distraction to the boys. If you didn’t look the way you do, it wouldn’t bother me, but the boys stare at you”.
- After the post went viral (with over 30k shares within hours), the school decided to start pulling other girls aside and reprimanding them for their outfits as well.
- The teacher involved took to social media herself, calling Madyson and Brooke liars and threatening to sue for defamation.
- The principal, while acknowledging wrong doing for the comments boldfaced lied in a community wide email. Read a PDF of the entire email exchange.
- This entire situation promotes a rape culture. Girls are apparently responsible for a boys thought patterns and behavior. All influenced by the way they dress. Magical.
- This entire situation clearly tells us that Marshall Public Schools value boys over girls. Since Madyson’s attire might become a distraction (with her wiley ankle skin?) to boys and disrupt their learning, it’s much better to pull Madyson out of class and disrupt her learning in case she might open up the opportunity for a rape frenzy in class with the subtle curve of her calf.
In the meantime, Brooke and I have decided to open up www.ThatsBS.org to follow the case and help effect change. You can look forward to other bullshit injustices in this space as well. Petitions, articles, and resources for dealing with these injustices. I hope you’ll follow us on this journey.
The situation has now gone quite viral on the internet. Here’s just a few links where you can read about the situation (some of them with David Turner’s seriously one-sided, total BS email to the community cited as a source).
Detroit Free Press: http://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2016/02/10/marshall-middle-school-outfit-distracting/80206736/
WWMT News Channel 3: http://wwmt.com/news/local/w-mich-mom-shares-outrage-on-social-media-over-clothing-controversy