Bil Browning

Drawing the line: girls wearing pants

Filed By Bil Browning | March 12, 2009 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Living
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A lesbian student from has sued Lebanon Schools after her principal told her she couldn't wear a tuxedo to prom. The Indianapolis Star includes this explanation of the lawsuit:

The Lebanon High School senior, whose name is not revealed in the lawsuit, is a lesbian and does not wear dresses because she thinks they express a sexual identity that she does not embrace, court filings said.
...
In the filing, ACLU of Indiana Legal Director Ken Falk argued that the district's policy violates the U.S. Constitution.

"From a First Amendment standpoint, wearing a tuxedo makes an affirmative statement about her own sexuality," Falk said. "Students have free-speech rights."

He said the district's policy to allow only boys to wear tuxedos violates the federal Title IX law, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender in schools.

The girl's lawsuit says the school's regular dress code does not contain any gender-specific requirements and that she and many other girls routinely wear pants to school.

Of course, the seemingly obligatory quote from an anti-gay bigot is included. Indiana's Prince of Priggishness, Micah Clark, eagerly stepped up to the plate to provide the statement.

Micah Clark, director of the American Family Association of Indiana, said he applauds the principal's decision because it mirrors the community's standards. Allowing a girl to wear a tuxedo to the prom, Clark said, could send a destructive message to other students.

"I don't think we should allow kids to act out certain impulses," he said. "A girl in a tuxedo doing this as a sexual statement, that's something the school should draw the line at."

You know, at this point I just have to laugh each time I read a quote from Micah. I seriously hope the rightwing nutjobs continue to use him as their spokesperson. Not only is he one of the prissiest men you'll ever see (and I've seen quite a few!), with such a strong biblical name and the likelihood of getting prize-winning statements like that, the guy is a public relations disaster.

Do you really think that most Hoosiers are going to be upset over a girl not wearing a dress? Indiana might be slow to change, but a good 98% of the population (Pentecostals and the Amish excluded, of course!) seem to be alright with the idea of a woman in pants.

When the rightwing spends time railing about stupid crap like this, they only further to highlight what the results of their long-dreamed theocracy would look like. You know, like "drawing the line" at a girl wearing pants.


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If I were a student at that high school, I'd have gotten together a group of guys and girls for a gender-swap day at the school. If prom's off-limits, but the handbook has no gender-specific clauses it'd be worth trying. I'm sure some civics-minded teacher with tenure would be glad to stand behind 'em.

But then again, consider the source of the suggestion. :)

"When the rightwing spends time railing about stupid crap like this" Then why are you taking time to write about it?