Friday, May 13, 2005

Pretty in Pink

I just read this news story over at the Netscape News Forum, and personally thought it was ridiculous. Whatever happened to kids having FUN at school? I'm so tired of everything having to be turned into some kind of drama or attack on mores.

I happen to agree with one reader who commented: "If he was not humiliated then why was anyone else bothered?" Good grief. Here's the article:

Prom Dress Gets Him Suspended

A Wisconsin high school student who wore a dress to prom was suspended, fined and barred from athletics. Plus his date was a guy. Fair punishment or too harsh?

It seemed like a funny way to show up at the prom: a girlfriend's spaghetti-strap dress and a blond wig, open-toed platform sandals, earrings and necklace from Goodwill. And his mom lent him her purse.

"I looked like Marilyn Monroe," Kerry Lofy told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

The 18-year-old high senior at Lake Geneva Badger High School was suspended for three days, fined $249 for disorderly conduct and banned from his last track and field meet.

When word of his plans for the prom got out last week, the associate principal told him three times not to wear the dress, he told the newspaper. Last year he showed up in a dress made of duck tape -- a tuxedo seen in many other high school proms.

The six-foot, 185-pound senior was turned away. He returned to his car to put a suit over his dress and went into the prom. Then he took his suit off. School security took him outside and a police report was filed.

His "date" for the prom was Victor Anderson, who is gay and did not have anyone to go with, the Journal-Sentinel said. According to Mr. Lofy, the school did not object to the date but to his dress.

School officials have been refusing reporters' calls seeking comments. Mr. Lofy said his friends plan to protest the school's decision.

Do you think it was fair punishment or was it too harsh?


Blogger Mariana said...

I think it probably depends on whether him dressing like a girl would be tolerated on any other day. If he would be punished or barred from entering school had he showed up in a dress for classes, it makes sense not to allow him to wear a dress at the prom either.

The question should be more like if anyone should ever be punished for dressing anyway they like, even when it's unconventional. If I was the ruler of the world I'd let people wear whatever they liked. But I'm not the ruler, and people are nasty and mean, and that's why certain conventions are in place. A guy wearing dresses would probably attract the attention of mean people who would hurt him for it, and that would disrupt school order. And naturally, if instead of school we were talking about his place of work I seriously doubt he would have showed up like that, for fear of losing his job. He wanted to provoke that kind of reaction, because it was fun and he didn't really have anything to lose.

Friday, May 13, 2005 3:22:00 PM  
Blogger Terri said...

Would a girl be treated this way if she showed up in pants? To say that the school didn't object to his dating a gay student is ridiculous, of course they did. And yeah, even if it was to get attention and HAVE FUN, what the hell is wrong with that? Plenty of time to be a bland, gray conformist....just look at all of them around you all the time.

Saturday, May 14, 2005 11:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Alex said...

My question is: Is he gay as well? Because if he was, and had the other gay student as his date in earnest, I don't think there should have been any problem.

However, and I don't know if I can say this clearly, if he was NOT gay, and was only bringing the other gay student "because he didn't have anybody else to go with" and felt the need to make himself up, then there might be a problem. Was he assuming that gay men like other men dressed in dressed? I don't know. Most likely, he was just being a high school senior. Acting before he thought. Lord knows I certainly did (and still do) enough of that.

I still think they should get to the bottom of the issue before suspending, fining, and barring him from athletic activities.

Saturday, May 14, 2005 5:38:00 PM  
Anonymous A said...

Oops. Dressed in DRESSES. Sorry.

Saturday, May 14, 2005 5:39:00 PM  
Blogger Kirkkitsch said...

True, I see your point about attracting negative attention and therefore possibly endangering himself (and the school with a lawsuit, which I'm sure crossed their minds too). I also can see how deliberately wearing something that might instigate unwanted problems. BUT, I contend that suspension and a fine of $249 (Puhleaze! Was some property damaged in the process or what?) is WAY beyond the realm of common sense. I find it very sad and pathetic that something as frivolous as a school prank (that didn't involve weapons, vandalism, etc.) as gotten to the point where it's put in the same league as an actual CRIME. Ridiculous.

You know, I was thinking the same thing. Just goes to show you that the old proverbial "double standard" is still alive and kicking. You KNOW a girl wouldn't have gotten anything this severe, as far as the punishments were concerned.

I also agree that they are covering their ass by saying that the school "did not object to the date but to his dress." What-E V E R! Trust me, it's just a veiled attempt to nip the label of 'homophobia' in the bud.

Like the Tootsie Roll commercial says "The world may never know." Personally, I go the impression that he wasn't gay and that the dress thing was just something fun to do. I don't think there was maliciousness at the core of the situation. But, then, like you said, you just don't know. Whatever the case, it was blown WAY out of proportion and I'm ashamed it's even something deemed "newsworthy."

Thanks for droppin' in and commenting! :)

Saturday, May 21, 2005 11:06:00 PM  

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