America's Christian Values Will Be Destroyed By A Girl in a Tux
March 1, 2005 9:46 PM   Subscribe

America's Christian Values Will Be Destroyed By A Girl in a Tux Kelli Davis, a straight-A student at Fleming Island High School, will not have her picture published in her Senior Yearbook because she wore a tux. Under the principal's policy, only male students may wear tuxes in the photographs. Davis, who is openly gay, is not allowed to be pictured in traditionally male garb. In addition to banning the photograph, the school principal also fired the yearbook editor for refusing to remove Davis' picture. A photo of the betuxed Kelli Davis is available here.
posted by expriest (99 comments total)
 
Are you fucking kidding me??!!! What the hell is going on here? What is WRONG with these people?

Goddammit - can you tell I'm angry?

This is INSANITY! Where does this stop????
posted by OhPuhLeez at 9:51 PM on March 1, 2005


Are you fucking kidding me??!!! What the hell is going on here? What is WRONG with you?

Goddammit - can you tell I'm angry?

Your post is INSANITY! Where does this stop????

(I actually know OhPuhLeez, so yes, I'm joking)
posted by davejay at 9:56 PM on March 1, 2005


Well, thank GOD. Girls in tuxes, cats and dogs living together, and next we have the Apocalypse. It's good to see that nobody's over-reacting to formalwear.

As soon as I heard she was doing that I would have been there in a pink kilt. In a second.
posted by Dipsomaniac at 9:57 PM on March 1, 2005


Don't forget box turtle marriage, and the hot man-on-dog love that Sen Santorum seems to get so hot about. Will somebody think of the children??!!!
posted by TungstenChef at 10:00 PM on March 1, 2005


This sort of thing no longer surprises me, but I do have a question about the person quoted at the end of the article, who applauded the principal's decision. She stated that it was a question of keeping children from overstepping the bounds of authority.

So my question is simply this: was it...

-- a politically correct statement consciously made to cover up for her homophobia, of which she is ashamed;

-- a sincere statement reflecting her actual feelings on the subject, having nothing to do with sexual orientation whatsoever; or

-- a sincere statement of her strongly felt internal rationalization of what is actually suppressed homophobia?

Since this IS the internet, I expect many "I know what she was thinking" replies. I do wish I could sit down and talk to the woman herself, though.
posted by davejay at 10:02 PM on March 1, 2005


Rules are rules, even bad ones. I'm guessing the principal might be worried that if he overlooks this instance, next year the yearbook will be fool of jokester boys in dresses and such, making a mockery of the statement Ms. Davis was trying to make.
posted by gyc at 10:07 PM on March 1, 2005


Couldn't they split the difference and let her be photographed in a classy tuxedo t-shirt?
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 10:09 PM on March 1, 2005


gyc, rules are not some metaphysical imperatives, nor are they writ in permanent ink on the sky. They are changeable. Besides, if you RTFA, you'd have noted that School board attorney Bruce Bickner said there is no written dress code for senior pictures.
posted by ori at 10:20 PM on March 1, 2005


Beyond just the "girl-in-tux" issue, what I'm more surprised by is the yearbook editor being willing to stand her ground to the point of losing her position for refusing to remove the "offending" picture. That takes some, err, balls.

</gender confusion>
posted by DaShiv at 10:21 PM on March 1, 2005


She's quite cute. Too bad she didn't go to my high school...
posted by Asparagirl at 10:21 PM on March 1, 2005


Why have rules if you're just going to change them on a whim? Besides, what would have happened if a guy had wanted to wear a dress. Maybe not an exact corrolary, but I think the school is in the right here. The school made her choice and the school made theirs.
posted by jmd82 at 10:23 PM on March 1, 2005


What does sexual orientation have to do with what you choose to (or should) wear for a formal school picture anyway (or is it just a coinsidence in this case)? "I'm a lesbian so I should get to wear something different"? I'm not following the logic. She's still a female. What if you're a guy with a distaste for black. Does that mean you can wear powder blue? Nope.
posted by Witty at 10:26 PM on March 1, 2005


Ack! coincidence.
posted by Witty at 10:28 PM on March 1, 2005


It's good to see that uniformity has been kept uncompromised. I'd been hearing rumors.
On preview: I'm not sure arbitrary rules deserve defenders, but it's good to see a few of you sticking up for the little guy.
posted by underer at 10:30 PM on March 1, 2005


Um, sorry, I just reread the article. Where "arbitrary rules" is above, please substitute "reactionary decisions of principal."
posted by underer at 10:36 PM on March 1, 2005


She could have just worn a dress like the rest of the girls and tattooed "I'M GAY" on her forehead... which to me, seems like it would have been a more effective way of getting her "message" out there.
posted by Witty at 10:41 PM on March 1, 2005


Wow, there was no rule being broken here. Just some kind of weird, vague idea in the head of the principal. It's good that our high school students are being taught to be blindly obedient to rules that they may or may not be aware of.

Land of the free, my ass.
posted by rks404 at 10:43 PM on March 1, 2005


Why have rules if you're just going to change them on a whim?

Because not all rules are created equal? Because some are arbitrary? Because rules that have the end effect of discriminating on minority groups are unjust regardless of the rule's original intent? I don't want to hurt your feelings or anything, jmd, but that is really just a stupid sentiment.

What does sexual orientation have to do with what you choose to (or should) wear for a formal school picture anyway (or is it just a coinsidence in this case)?

This is a hard question to answer, because I don't want to try to psychoanalyze the girl or make any sweeping generalizations. The point is that the girl isn't just doing this as a lark — wearing a tuxedo on formal occasions is part of her (gender-) identity. I would argue that this is linked to her identity as a lesbian. The portrait dress code is unjust because it puts tradition (i.e. men in tuxes, women in skirts) above these considerations. She didn't show up for the formal portrait in rags. She dressed up.

When the school takes the steps of banning a student from the yearbook, the burden of proof is on them to show exactly why it is inappropriate for the girl in question to wear a tux. Basing the decision on an arbitrary rule is, well, arbitrary.

And to the rest of you: you think that if they let this go, suddenly high school guys are going to be clamoring to show up in dresses in their senior pictures? Come on now. Seriously.

She could have just worn a dress like the rest of the girls and tattooed "I'M GAY" on her forehead... which to me, seems like it would have been a more effective way of getting her "message" out there.

Unlike you, she showed some class. And yet the system treated her the same as if she'd done what you suggest.
posted by rafter at 10:45 PM on March 1, 2005


Besides, what would have happened if a guy had wanted to wear a dress.
What would have happened? Riots? The terrorists will have already won? What would your answer to your rhetorical question be? What on earth could possibly happen?

Also, she is adorable. If I looked that cute in a tux I would insist on wearing one too. Oh, and hats off to the yearbook editor, too.
posted by smartyboots at 10:45 PM on March 1, 2005


"When uniformity is compromised, then authority no longer holds."

That quote is unbelievable. This woman is straight out of a Pink Floydian nightmare.
posted by knave at 10:47 PM on March 1, 2005


when uniformity is compromised, then authority no longer holds.

Essentially, she's saying that the first and most important consideration is the obedience of the students. "Son, what did you do in school today?" "Well, Mom, I didn't learn much of anything or improve myself in any way and I didn't make any effort to treat others with kindness or respect and I didn't do anything to make the world a better place... but I did shut up and do as I was told all day long." "That's wonderful, son! I'm so proud of you. And don't worry; no one cares about any of that other stuff, anyway."

Can we all just admit that schools are built on this principle? Can we stop pretending that schools were ever intended to be wonderful oases of education and empowerment and concede that their steady descent into totalitarianism, ignorance, and orwellian insanity has been one hundred percent intentional? Can we just acknowledge this one small piece of reality?
posted by Clay201 at 10:53 PM on March 1, 2005


This is all Julie Andews' fault. Or maybe Marlene Dietrich's
posted by kirkaracha at 10:54 PM on March 1, 2005


Not to make light, but she looks like a jazz pianist or a town car driver in that tuxedo.
*hoists stupidest comment trophy in the air*
posted by underer at 10:57 PM on March 1, 2005


Man, I just think this is outrageous! I'm a (mostly) straight girl who wanted to wear a tux to her prom in Northern Florida in 1991. Guess it's a good thing I moved before I reached my senior year, eh?
posted by Specklet at 11:05 PM on March 1, 2005


And what exactly would be wrong with boys wearing dresses?

Ah, bigotry.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 11:09 PM on March 1, 2005


I just sent the following email to the principal, cc'ed to the yearbook adviser, the superintendent, and the newspaper adviser. (I would have sent it directly to the paper, but their letters-submisison policy reads as follows: "Drop it off in Mrs. Warren's room, 253."

Mr. Ward,

I was saddened to read in the national news today about your decision to bar Kelli Davis from being photographed for your school's yearbook in attire normally reserved for male students. I was additionally saddened to learn of your decision to fire yearbook editor Keri Sewell for attempting to defend Davis's actions.

In making these decisions you have sent two clear messages to your students, and I believe neither of them are good.

First, you have told female students at Fleming Island High School that they are powerless to protest any discomfort they may feel at being photographed in the designated “female” attire for yearbook photographs.

Second, you have told all students at your school that attempts to protest a status quo that they perceive as unfair will be met with harsh punishment.

While I understand the need for a modicum of discipline in the high school setting, I worry that American students are being ill-prepared for the real world when they are raised in an environment that not only stifles, but retaliates against, the blossoming of self and the realization of civic duty. Ms. Davis seems to have been struggling to express the former; Ms. Sewell, the latter.

I urge you to reconsider both cases, Mr. Ward, and to encourage the personal development of your students.

posted by damn yankee at 11:11 PM on March 1, 2005


Because rules that have the end effect of discriminating on minority groups are unjust regardless of the rule's original intent?

How is she being discriminated against?

Unlike you, she showed some class. And yet the system treated her the same as if she'd done what you suggest.

Settle down. I see this as a stunt, a way of drawing attention to herself and her sexuality, which to me, is an inappropriate use of formal school pictures. Is this not what she's doing? How about if someone wants to wear a small gold cross on a lapel, or worse, a Swastika? Why do the pictures have to be something more for some (in this case a gay person) and just tradition for others?
posted by Witty at 11:11 PM on March 1, 2005


This is silly.
What if it was a totally straight cheerleader who wanted to wear a tux because she thought it would be funny?
I don't think they would let that slide either.

It's high school. There are rules, even non-posted rules. Many high schools make you wear uniforms. And guess what? The girl uniforms are different than the guy uniforms, and I don't think they'd let the gay students wear the uniform of the opposite sex in that situation either.

This is really no big deal. There are many important issues right now for homosexuals. This isn't one of them.

On preview, as Witty says (oh my god I'm agreeing with Witty).... settle down.
posted by Espoo2 at 11:21 PM on March 1, 2005


Her parents paid $700 to put her picture in the back of the schoolbook. This way, it ends up being much more memorable. Firing the book designer well, that was petty.
posted by Dean Keaton at 11:24 PM on March 1, 2005


Many seem to be making the assumption that this young woman wore a tuxedo to make some kind of statement about being a lesbian. I haven't seen her make that comment -- and unless you can point me to it, you should not assume she did this as a "stunt" or to make a statement. Her stated reason seems to be one of prudishness -- she didn't want to show cleavage, and apparently likes tuxedos, and wants that to be accepted.

Was she discriminated against? I dunno. But it is entirely possible a straight girl would have been allowed to wear the tux -- that she only got singled out, on fairly trumped up charges, because she is openly gay. Or maybe not. Since we don't really know, it's best not to make the assumption either way.

But this does raise many interesting cultural issues. Conformity is actually a pretty big component of culture -- it's not a culture if there aren't at least some broad rules that almost everybody follows. So it is entirely predictable that a young woman breaking such a basic rule -- what she is supposed to wear -- would cause a big ruckus. Particularly when she breaks an even bigger rule -- who's she supposed to love.

But, aren't we at the point in America where we are supposed to move beyond dogmatic acceptance of whatever culture was handed down to us as inviolate? That's actually the issue. Many American will say emphatically 'yes.' Many will say just as emphatically 'no.'

But, the libertarian in me says it isn't anybody's damn business what this young woman wears in her senior picture.
posted by teece at 11:36 PM on March 1, 2005


I saw an earlier article about this wholly unnecessary fuss, where Kelli did say she felt uncomfortable wearing a dress that showed her cleavage.

As for the quote, and I would love to find out who Kelly Gordon is, well, some people will welcome fascism.

Article photos and link to video on the meeting
posted by quarsan at 11:47 PM on March 1, 2005


So the only way to not show cleavage is to wear men's clothes? Mmm hmm. So it IS just a coincidence that this girl is a lesbian (c'mon). I'm sure there have been plenty of straight girls over the years that have had similar concerns and discomforts... and yet, no alarming chicks-in-tuxes stories. Or maybe it has happened before, ya know, girls wearing men's clothes for their senior portrait. We're only hearing about this one because the girl in question is gay. And THAT makes it more "special".
posted by Witty at 11:52 PM on March 1, 2005


Well, we have everyone involved to thank for providing a great lesson: authority is an ass!

My favorite part is the principle pleading "tradtion", when it was the first time! LOL! An ass, I say!

If you wish to teach a lesson about rules, it behoves one to first provide a set of meaningful rules with rational basis. Abitrary rules teach disrespect for authority (a good lesson, IMO, but we all know that's not their intention)
posted by Goofyy at 11:53 PM on March 1, 2005


davejay: I don't know what she was thinking, but the statement was consistent with the fundamental value system of SJs.

Just as some people are instinctually drawn towards change, others are drawn towards stability.
posted by catachresoid at 11:59 PM on March 1, 2005


You people have been out of high school for too long; this kind of thing (and much worse) happens all the time.

There are many important issues right now for homosexuals. This isn't one of them.

Seconded. Sucks, but there you go.
posted by Tlogmer at 12:02 AM on March 2, 2005


Witty et al -

So, allowing people to wear whatever they wanted for their senior pictures (within the bounds of actual legality, of course) would cause . . . what problems, exactly?

It really isn't enough to say, but! But this person was just trying to draw attention to herself! So what? Who cares? Why should I give the faintest of damns what her motivations were, or if this will lead other people to push whatever boundaries they please as a joke, or . . . or I don't know exactly what you think will happen. What *do* you think will happen, exactly? Why would it be bad? Honestly, I don't get it.

Back at my horrible high school, our largely ignored dress code at least had some putative, albeit ludicrous, reasons behind it. If I recall correctly, they were:

1) Certain forms of dress are gang colors! The crips and the bloods will invade our rural Michigan school and there will be kids shooting each other in the halls!

2) The country, they shouted, is now rated X!
By filth we're polluted, by slime overrun!
They fear that our children are learning of sex!
A few, it's been rumored, have heard how it's done!
(I.e. nothing too, er, provocative.)

And those rules, which had some vague semblance of a rationale behind them, were still so stupid that they taught nothing but disrespect for authority. The ruling (not even a rule) in question here seems to have the rationale, "I don't like it, darn it!"

Why, exactly, is this a good decision?
posted by kyrademon at 12:09 AM on March 2, 2005


So the only way to not show cleavage is to wear men's clothes? Mmm hmm. So it IS just a coincidence that this girl is a lesbian (c'mon).

Is it that crazy of an idea to you that some girls, even straight girls, like tuxedos, look good in a well-fitted one, and might want to wear one in a formal setting? Jesus, d'you think women who wear pant-suits to board meetings are dykes too?

I agree that part of the reason there's so much noise about this is because she's gay and that adds extra titillation to the story, but I don't think she necessarily wore the tuxedo as a "gay thing" or "attention whore" thing. It could just (GASP) be a "I like tuxedos, I look good in tuxedos, this is a stupid rule, I'm going to wear a tuxedo and show people that you don't have to wear a dress to look formal" thing, and people threw the GHEY in afterwards to blow the stupidity up.
posted by schroedinger at 12:11 AM on March 2, 2005


Personally, kyrademon, I don't care. It wouldn't bother me in th least if they let kids wear whatever they want... strike a pose, whatever. But the rule, arbitrary or not, was there... even if unwritten. I don't blame the prinicipal who was basically taken by surprise by all this, for making the decision he did based on that rule.

Do you have have to keep your eyes open? Can you snarl instead of smile? Can I hold up a peace symbol? How about a wink? Are any of these ideas harmful in the grand scheme of things? Should they throw all the rules out?

schroedinger - Please don't try to suggest that I have a problem with women wearing mens clothes in general or whatever it is you're trying to imply. That is far from the truth and not even close to the point.

I'm going to wear a tuxedo and show people that you don't have to wear a dress to look formal" thing,...

Well, maybe that's part of the problem. Maybe asking or petitioning ahead of time would have been a better, more productive and inclusive approach. Not everything has to be all rebel-ed out to be effective.
posted by Witty at 12:25 AM on March 2, 2005


But the rule, arbitrary or not, was there... even if unwritten.

Ah... so... arbitrary and unwritten rules are okay because why, exactly?

Were students even aware of this so-called rule?

If it's part of the dress code, it should be included in the school's writtten code. Clearly it wasn't, and is therefore unenforceable-- the school board dropped the ball on this one.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 12:37 AM on March 2, 2005


Abitrary rules teach disrespect for authority

Goofyy, that's a very good point.

My high school had females wear a low-cut shrug in their senior photos also. I remember that I wasn't comfortable putting it on, but I did it anyways. My mother would not have let me buy clothes with a similar cut.
posted by halonine at 12:42 AM on March 2, 2005


I bow my head in shame that I live thirty minutes away and worked at a Fleming Island grocery store in high school

North Florida is south Georgia. It's about as red as it gets. Unfortunately, my perception is that most of America thinks very much the same way. This is the face of American morality and sensibilities.

A girl I drank with tonight, who I know had a one-night stand with a friend of mine not long ago, told me she thinks homosexuality is sickening. She's very religious, apparently, and loves her weed. I feel like I encounter this every day. There's got to be some theory in sociology somewhere about the isolation and hostility that certain groups receive to shift attention and scorn away from other taboo's and their habitués.
posted by trinarian at 12:54 AM on March 2, 2005


Another problem with this kind of dress code is that it discriminates against transgender youth. It is conceivable that Ms. Davis sees herself as, in some part, TG; to the extent that she does, the school is discriminating against her.

Uniforms are a good idea insofar as they reduce competition for coolness via spending big bucks, I agree. But forcing students to wear clothing that goes against their principles -- whether that means forcing women to wear clothing that shows cleavage, or making a pro-operative male-to-female transsexual dress in men's clothes, or whatever else -- is discrimination. High school is hell for everyone, but especially so for transgender people. There's no reason the system should go out of its way to make things harder.

I can't agree that it's not discriminatory because all the other females have to dress the same way. This is, at root, the same argument as the "gay people have the same right as everyone else to marry someone of the opposite sex" argument. It fails because the law is very specifically denying people the right to do as they choose, so long as they aren't harming anyone.

Finally, on the point that this isn't a big issue for homosexuals, I completely disagree. Much of homophobia is actually based on transgression of gender stereotypes, so in a big way, issues like this one are at the core of the problems. If we can get freedom of gender expression, everyone's lives (whether G, L, B, T or straight) will be much richer and fuller.
posted by jiawen at 12:54 AM on March 2, 2005


If the girl looks good in a tuxedo, let her wear a tuxedo. It's a good thing. Furthermore, it was already the approved formal attire, just the other gender's. And enforcing gender-specific dress codes is sexist. By definition.

I like Witty's argument. "Why does she have to be such a dyke? Geez."

vaguely related: Did anyone see Gilmore Girls last week, with Rory in suit and tie? The pantsuit for women was okay 10 years ago, is it now only the territory of drag kings and teenage rebels?
posted by mek at 12:58 AM on March 2, 2005


So the only way to not show cleavage is to wear men's clothes? Mmm hmm. So it IS just a coincidence that this girl is a lesbian (c'mon)

Just to whip out my street cred, I am an out lesbian and have been for a lot of years. How comfortable would you feel posing in a dress for a picture that many of your peers would preserve for a lifetime?

Yeah. Me, too. Not too cool, huh?

I can't speak for the Lesbian Nation, but I just don't want to be looked upon that way. This young woman had two choices in attire and she chose the one in which she felt most comfortable. I would have made the same choice in this day and age. In fact, when I am called upon to attend formal work functions presently, I still don't wear a dress and it's not a problem. I don't understand why the situation might be different in high school. If you take my mother's word as truth, it was difficult to put me in a dress from the time I was 2 years old. Argue what you know.
posted by kamikazegopher at 1:21 AM on March 2, 2005


Just about everything's been said, I think, except that as far as I can tell, the students are given the clothing they wear for the picture at the shoot. So, if I'm right, it was a choice between showing her (upper) tits or getting the photographer to let her wear the tuxedo. That would take a lot of the fire out of the argument that she did this as a stunt, which I don't believe anyway.

And as for the whims of the principal -- he does need to have discretion, of course, but if he makes crazy pronouncements he'll get shouted down and/or his name will get plastered all over the news media. Better to have a written dress code that can be challenged in advance. And +1 to Goofyy's point that arbitrary rules teach disrespect for authority.
posted by sninky-chan at 1:22 AM on March 2, 2005


Fleming Island is where all the money in Clay County is heading. Somehow, Sam Ward sleazed his way into the flagship high school of this county.

Mr. Ward was the principal of Orange Park High when I graduated in '96. He also tried everything in his power to expel me and three of my friends for a rather silly youthful indiscretion in which we were all on school premises after hours.

I was a respected NJRTOC cadet, one friend was a star track runner, the other a Mu Alpha Theta math champion... We were all relegated to community service... and cleaning up after basketball games in the "Raiderdome" on school premises......after hours. Yeah.

The educational system in Clay county Florida is being bled to death by living "administrative" jokes such as Sam Ward.

Girl wearing a Tux....... He would have us believe that her choice would cause an instantaneous outbreak of homosexual/lesbian sex in the hallways between classes.

Three years as an exemplary student in a high school under his guidance was "bearable."

This is just another example as to why he should never have been allowed into the educational field.
posted by PROD_TPSL at 1:48 AM on March 2, 2005


Huzzah for damn yankee!

Would you mind posting any replies you get?
posted by johnjoe at 1:55 AM on March 2, 2005


As sninky-chan said, the photographer generally brings these "props' with them for senior pictures. Guys don't go out and rent matching tuxes and girls don't go buy dresses with marabou feathers around the neckline, so the choices are ... tux or cleavage or no picture at all. Personally, I don't see what the big deal is. In a sea of small photos on a page, her pic would have blended in perfectly with all the others. As it is ... it's now a full page somewhere in the book, and no one will forget it.

She looks like she might be "busty", and I can tell you that one of my friends, similarly endowed, hates her senior pic, because she think it makes her look like a whore. There was NO way for her to avoid masses of cleavage with that stupid formal/feather/dress thing. She'd have liked to wear something else, even the tux, but no ... girls had to wear the "dresses".
posted by Orb at 2:32 AM on March 2, 2005


it's a question of keeping children from overstepping the bounds of authority

read "it's a question of ensuring we keep girls submissive"

can't use the old "one good f*ck" technique anymore - bloody liberals made that illegal - but we still have our ways...
posted by missbossy at 3:00 AM on March 2, 2005


Personally, I don't see what the big deal is.

Alright, then allow me to repost what kamikazegopher said here:

Just to whip out my street cred, I am an out lesbian and have been for a lot of years. How comfortable would you feel posing in a dress for a picture that many of your peers would preserve for a lifetime?

Yeah. Me, too. Not too cool, huh?

I can't speak for the Lesbian Nation, but I just don't want to be looked upon that way. This young woman had two choices in attire and she chose the one in which she felt most comfortable. I would have made the same choice in this day and age. In fact, when I am called upon to attend formal work functions presently, I still don't wear a dress and it's not a problem. I don't understand why the situation might be different in high school. If you take my mother's word as truth, it was difficult to put me in a dress from the time I was 2 years old. Argue what you know.


A little clearer now? This is, of course, leaving aside the possible (but, I admit, unsubstantiated; could easily be a red herring) trans issues.

More to the point, at what time did we decide it was okay for publicly-funded schools to enforce gender stereotyping? Presumably the school would not bat an eye if a female student showed up in pants and a men's dress shirt; presumably there is no school rule decreeing that female students must wear dresses or skirts at all times.

And I'm still waiting for someone to show where the 'dresses only' rule is written in the school's dress code.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 3:26 AM on March 2, 2005


Specklet says she is glad she moved from Northern Florida. Graduation pics in yearbook is far down on the list of why you should be glad to have moved from N. Florida.
Question: what if the girl had decided to pose in the nude? Would that be ok because rules are made to be changed?
posted by Postroad at 4:06 AM on March 2, 2005


God, I don't get the deal here at all either. Isn't it obvious that the girl should just wear whatever makes Witty feel comfortable?
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:13 AM on March 2, 2005


PROD_TPSL are you sure that he didn't try to expel you because you you were setting up all the animals from the Mountasia mini golf course in the cafeteria? ;) Or was that the year before...
posted by nulledge at 4:39 AM on March 2, 2005


If she had found some way to make this an issue around how wearing a dress somehow demeans her faith and offends her religious piety, I bet you dollars to donuts she'd have been back in that photo, double pronto, wearing her tux, placed front and center, and probably holding the flag, too. With an eagle on her shoulder. And bathed in golden light.
posted by kcds at 4:48 AM on March 2, 2005


Last time I checked, year books were not a standard part of the educational process. In fact, year books (or "annuals" for you Southrons) are an entirely optional fluff spackle on the tail end of the school year created in order to fill up those last days between exams and Summer vacation with vapid signings in the back.

In short, I don't care. The year book is not a major or minor portion of the educational process. Had they disallowed her from wearing ostensibly male attire at school (without the distractive qualities usually cited for banning particular clothing) I might have a blip on my radar.

However, this is a senior picture, something she does not have to participate in and something for which other options are available (such as getting her own damn pictures taken).

I enjoy my annuals from high school and look through them maybe once per year. Everything is not a rights or constitutional issue. I fail to see what rights she had in this instance, exactly, to participate in something she had to shell out dough for.

If I was this family, I would take the yearbook staff and the school to court for objectionable corporate practices or something similar. In fact, get a whole class-action suit going against Jostens and the yearbook/class ring industry monopoly and get a ruling on not receiving what you were promised in return for your money.
posted by Captaintripps at 4:50 AM on March 2, 2005


dirtynumbangelboy, there is no rule about gender specific clothing in the dress code. Although there is one against spaghetti-strap dresses. To be honest I haven't been following this story that closely, mainly because the local rag is horrendous, just look at it's former editor in chief. But if Fleming Island is like any other school in the area they have the students make appointments at their local Olan Mills for their senior pictures, or they are allowed to bring in their own picture to be approved.
posted by nulledge at 4:53 AM on March 2, 2005


I would have to say the fact that she is gay should not be part of this equation - but the Principal made it one and used this authority to (send a message) remove her individuality from the yearbook. It's a diversion, they needed an excuse to step on her.

With that being said, I will leave it to the audience to decide what type of authority is being used here. Personally, Mussolini comes to mind.

Yankee - bravo to you and your letter.

I have to laugh at this decision. Really, we are talking about a very nicely dressed young woman, in a tux. No stand up hair here, not six piercings in her face, etc. etc. or any of the other things adults might freak on. I need a copy of the yearbook so I can count the mullets - this is something the school board needs to meet on.

I am happy to hear her parents stood behind her. Now, get her to a college in a big city out west, up north...
posted by fluffycreature at 5:09 AM on March 2, 2005


I believe that everyone should have the right to look back on their yearbook picture with shame.
posted by spock at 5:28 AM on March 2, 2005


Can someone explain exactly what is wrong with standing out from the crowd? I don't mean going Godwin (as Witty suggested), but as long as it's tasteful or harmless... I mean, come on. People talk about "Authority" as if it were something monolithic and inhuman, but it's just... us. People. Humans. We are authority. We are the rules. That's the fundamental truth of democracy. And that collective "we" isn't threatened or offended by something like this.

We're in a new social contract, not with "the government" but with each other. We should be willing to put up with the crap of others, because we're sure willing to ask them to put up with ours.
posted by GhostintheMachine at 5:46 AM on March 2, 2005


Besides, what would have happened if a guy had wanted to wear a dress.
What would have happened? Riots? The terrorists will have already won? What would your answer to your rhetorical question be? What on earth could possibly happen?


The day young women wear tuxedo's to their proms will be the day that Osama rides to washington.
posted by berek at 5:48 AM on March 2, 2005


We dressed in graduation gowns for our senior pictures, everybody did, boys and girls. Made things quite a bit simpler on that front. On the other hand, my school had a ridiculous rule that girls had to wear black nylons and high heels (but not too high!) when walking across the stage at graduation.

A lot of the girls, some gay, some straight, objected to that and were told to stuff it. Some people objected because heels were out of character for them. Some people (me amongst them) objected because they don't walk well in heels and were afraid of falling. Some people objected because the gowns were too short and didn't cover their ankles as their religion prescribed (they were given a longer gown). The fact is, gay or straight, these kind of old fashioned gender biased rules have no place in a tolerant society. It's not that hard to create a dress code or uniform or set of rules that is accommodating to a lot more people than 'here's what you're wearing'.
posted by jacquilynne at 5:53 AM on March 2, 2005




Should the S&M guy be allowed to wear a bit and leather in the picture?

She's making a political statement in the yearbook, which is a little corny.

Soon she'll realize every girl in college is lesbian, but they all look better in a dress.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 6:14 AM on March 2, 2005


Actually, in my high school yearbook from 1989, there's a picture of a heterosexual coupleat the prom in matching tuxedos.

Society has remained standing.
posted by jonmc at 6:46 AM on March 2, 2005


Others applauded Ward's decision, including Karen Gordon, who said, "When uniformity is compromised, then authority no longer holds."

Well. Goddamn if that ain't the most fascist-sounding thing I'm likely to read all day.
posted by The Card Cheat at 7:08 AM on March 2, 2005


To clear something up : lesbianism is not transgenderism. Being gay has nothing to do with being transgender.

Transgender is a gender identity.
Lesbianism is a sexual identity.

Clear?

While she may "come out" as transgender later in her life (though probably not. Wearing a suit is not the number one sign of wanting to be a guy. The number one sign is... well, identifying as male, which she's not doing nor is anyone in the articles claiming.), right now, she's not and it's not appropriate to throw that label on this situation as it diminishes real issues faced by youth who are out as TG in high school.

(My stret cred, you ask? Openly queer since age 13. Started doing activism on queer issues at 15. Headed my college's GSA for two years. My last year of college, I lived with four queer folks, who of whom happened to be transgendered as well. I've met both Leslie Feinberg and Kate Bornstein. How's that?)
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:18 AM on March 2, 2005


I'm still trying to figure out how a tuxedo is "men's clothes." There are a few male-specific clothes items out there, but I wouldn't put a tuxedo in there. I'm pretty sure our concert band had a uniform that was pretty close to a tuxedo that a number of girls wore when I was in high school. I think they probably would have been allowed to use a headshot in that uniform as their senior picture.

Remember in the 1980s when women's fashions went out of their way to emulate men's in order to promote an "equal" workplace? We ended up with shoulder pads in everything, pantsuits, and other halfway-to-male clothing innovations. I'd rather see a dress shirt (and tuxedo!) designed with a woman in mind rather than a half-assed attempt to create a fashion that combines "feminine sensibilities" (i.e. we can see your rear and breasts). I seem to remember seeing some female restaurant hostesses wearing ties recently, too. It's a headshot, on a page with many of them. If this is the most shocking one, then the school has fewer problems than mine did.
posted by mikeh at 7:47 AM on March 2, 2005


Others applauded Ward's decision, including Karen Gordon, who said, "When uniformity is compromised, then authority no longer holds."

That's the part of the article that stands out most to me. It makes me cringe in distaste. How anyone can think that this is a reasonable thing to say is well beyond me - it's so....sheepy. Ugh.

I say let the young lady wear what she wants to wear, especially if there's no clear dress code for the pictures. It's clothing. Big whoopity do. As long as she was in one of the two choices offered for the pictures, I fail completely to see the problem. And her sexual preference to me is irrelevant and thrown in purely for the sake of sensationalism. The principal wanted to take the heat off of himself for the crime of stifling individuality in such a way that borders, in my opinion, on censorship.

I'm sure he's proud - "Yessir, I'm erasing one girl's senior memories for not comforming to my idea of what's proper, I'm rewarding another for standing up for her principles by firing her from her position, but look! A lesbian! In a tuxedo!"

Boy, the temptation to contact him and call him a narrowminded, judgemental, sheepy backwater hick is pretty fierce. Won't do any good - is impolite and generalistic - so I'm not, but oh, it is tempting.
posted by angeline at 8:00 AM on March 2, 2005


I was thisclose to wearing a tux to my high school grad formal. (non-lesbian female here) Renting a tux is a helluva lot cheaper than the whole formal dress ensemble, and in the past I've worn a tux for the bands and choirs I'm in, and when I portrayed Scrooge in a school production. I look damn good in a tux. (I'm nearly tempted to wear it to my wedding, but I don't wanna steal my honey's thunder, so I've decided to rent one for the rehersal dinner.)

In the end, I did fall in love with a dress which I wore to the formal. One of my guy friends wore a kilt and sporin to the event and no one raised an eyebrow. He looked terrific and got a big full-length shot in the yearbook. None of this was a big deal. Did I just go to a particularly forward-thinking school? Or is this one of the many advantages of being Canadian?
posted by raedyn at 8:21 AM on March 2, 2005


Here are the email addresses of the faculty: http://www.clay.k12.fl.us/fih/

Sam Ward, Principal
sward@mail.clay.k12.fl.us
Laura Johnson, Vice Principal
ljohnson@mail.clay.k12.fl.us
Dan Finley, Assistant Principal
dfinley@mail.clay.k12.fl.us
Thomas Pittman, Assistant Principal
tpittman@mail.clay.k12.fl.us
Deputy Fred Eckert, Youth Resource Officer
fgeckert@mail.clay.k12.fl.us
posted by Optimus Chyme at 8:21 AM on March 2, 2005


but look! A lesbian! In a tuxedo!"

I blame the gay penguins.
posted by jonmc at 8:25 AM on March 2, 2005


you know, witty is right. rules are rules, and they must be obeyed.

i just wish he'd been around to tell those damn uppity niggers to stfu and obey the rules during the so-called civil rights era. i mean, it's obvious the rules weren't based on hatred or discrimination, and while they might have seemed unfortunate in some cases and arbitrary in others, they were the rules.

not to mention there were more important problems facing blacks than the right to choose their own seats on a bus or eat at some crappy department store lunch counter.

seriously, the fuck is wrong with some of you? i still haven't heard anyone explain just exactly how allowing this girl to dress in a way that made her feel comfortable would have been the beginning of the end for american civilization or the final nail in the coffin for the concept of authority.
posted by lord_wolf at 8:29 AM on March 2, 2005


Why is it that everyone has to wear the same thing in a yearbook photo anyhow? I'd rather look back at photos from 1989 of what my friends actually wore, than the stuff they were forced to wear for one photograph and never touched again if they could help it.

Also, my wife points out that girls rarely want to be seen wearing the same thing as other girls... :)
posted by Foosnark at 8:35 AM on March 2, 2005


This could have been a nice, interesting discussion if people had just Read. The. Fucking. Article.

The students had two choices - tux(top) or low-cut drape. That's it. She has stated she felt uncomfortable showing cleavage and so chose the tux top. She didn't choose to go rent a tux, or not buy a dress, or anything like that. She might not even have worn the tux if they'd been allowed to wear more modest feminine clothing.

There is nothing in the articles to suggest she was trying to make a gay-positive statement, is transgendered, was trying to be a bitch, or any of the other lovely statements presented in this thread. Nothing.

Sounds like she was just the first girl who was brave enough to say "fuck you" to the choices presented and then brave enough to keep saying "fuck you" to the principal and the school board. But that's just my opinion, and I'm willing to discuss it, if you have your facts straight about the circumstances.

The "flag a post" option needs to have "Didn't RTFA, is talking out of their ass". I'd have flagged half this discussion with that. "Noise" just doesn't really cover the same concept.
posted by livii at 8:55 AM on March 2, 2005


A girl I drank with tonight, who I know had a one-night stand with a friend of mine not long ago, told me she thinks homosexuality is sickening. She's very religious, apparently, and loves her weed

I know that girl!

what would have happened if a guy had wanted to wear a dress
What if you're a guy with a distaste for black. Does that mean you can wear powder blue
How about if someone wants to wear a small gold cross on a lapel, or worse, a Swastika?
what if the girl had decided to pose in the nude
Should the S&M guy be allowed to wear a bit and leather in the picture


How about if we address these situations when they arise? Yeah, yeah..whacky idea, I know.

The real situation is a young woman decided she did not want to wear the cleavage-bearing dress and put on the only other choice. Where does the principal get the idea that this is in any way significant? Why-- if there were no rules-- did he decided to compose one on the spot? What possible threat is there in this lack of blind conformity? I am wracking my brain.

The only thing I can think of is he imagines that to allow her to wear the Tuxedo (which is a nasty word-- I prefer "formal attire") he will be seen as condoning her sexual persuasion. Her sex life-- real or imagined--should not concern him as long as there are no laws being broken.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:56 AM on March 2, 2005


Postroad: Specklet says she is glad she moved from Northern Florida. Graduation pics in yearbook is far down on the list of why you should be glad to have moved from N. Florida.

Uh, I said I was glad I moved before my graduation. A little facetiously. Have you ever lived in Northern Florida? No? Then please withhold your stereotyping judgements until you have. Yes, it's "The South". Yes, there are "homophobic redneck assholes". But there are also "nice liberal vegetarian queers". And get this: I dated a black guy in high school and was never called a "white bitch honky"! Gasp!

/derail

posted by Specklet at 9:20 AM on March 2, 2005


You people have been out of high school for too long; this kind of thing (and much worse) happens all the time.
Actually, I was in high school so long ago, you couldn't even be out then. So if someone were brave enough to challenge an unspoken dress code, the issue of whether it related to her sexuality wouldn't even be discussed in this open, fairly civilized manner. (And IMO her sexual orientation may have been a factor from the *principal's* POV.)

Even within the past year, I read of a couple of gay kids in a small resort town in my state (Tawas, MI) who were segregated from their schoolmates because they had been harassed. That's right - the harassers weren't punished, the victims were isolated.
So from a gay-rights POV it is progress that this "trivial" issue is not only being debated in the town, but that it's a national news story.

A side note: I first read this story on an editor's forum debating whether an article should have referred to her as a "self-proclaimed lesbian".

And yes, "When uniformity is compromised, then authority no longer holds" is absolutely chilling. Moreso because people who believe in and utter such phrases probably couldn't even fathom why we think it's a frightening attitude.
posted by NorthernLite at 9:44 AM on March 2, 2005


Grapefruitmoon, I disagree that it's inappropriate to bring transgender issues into this. I see it all as effectively the same fight. People don't need to identify as transgender to be affected by transgender issues, or to be harmed by transphobia. GLB people are harmed by transphobia all the time; there are studies that show that people are often more offended by, for example, gay men's gender transgressions (wearing pink, walking "funny" or whatever) than by what they do in the bedroom.

I don't think bringing TG issues into this diminishes other TG people's fight for respect and liberation. I certainly don't think it diminishes my fight, anyway. (Yes, I'm TG myself. I hope that establishes my street cred enough.)

Thank you, though, for adding the note about gender expression vs. sexual orientation. It's always good to note that, and I tend to assume everyone knows as much about the subject as I do.
posted by jiawen at 9:53 AM on March 2, 2005


The real situation is a young woman decided she did not want to wear the cleavage-bearing dress and put on the only other choice.

Sorry---the image is too much and made me laugh out loud.
posted by leftcoastbob at 10:13 AM on March 2, 2005


my school had a ridiculous rule that girls had to wear black nylons and high heels (but not too high!) when walking across the stage at graduation.

Mine did too. My best friend and I (who were #1 and #4 in the class respectively, and thus got to sit on stage in the front row during the whole ceremony) found the rule to be complete and utter bullshit. So, we said "fuck it" and went bare-legged. The prissy bitch who was #3 in our class made some huffy comment to me like, "pfft, why can't you just accept things the way they are and deal with it?" and so I was all, "yeah, well, when has anything good ever come out of accepting the status quo?" and she was all "whatever." I think she's married with children now. Not that I care.

/off topic rambling

This whole issue is patently ridiculous, as are the stupid half-shirts that they make you put on to take your yearbook pictures. Everyone looks stupid. If this girl wants to wear a tux because she is uncomfortable in a low-cut drape (and they were REALLY low-cut) then more power to her. I wish I'd thought of it. Sexual orientation has nothing to do with it.
posted by salad spork at 10:13 AM on March 2, 2005


My husband and I were just discussing this. The whole thing would make more sense if the school had uniforms during the school year-- then I can maybe see enforcing uniforms for the graduation picture.

So here's a couple of ideas to get past that whole "freedom to be individual" thing:

Use plywood cut-out head photo Ops like you find at tacky tourist traps. Kids can decide between "Look At Me--I'm A Graduate!" or "Watch Out World--Here I Come!" or "Four Years of Homework and All I Got Was This Lousy Diploma!"

Or better yet, just use disembodied heads. Too individual, you cry? Digitally remove all hair! That will be nice and conforming. You can even change skin, eye, and lip color so everyone will look exactly the same.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 10:14 AM on March 2, 2005


Y'know, I see this as having a net positive outcome. Yeah, the principal's an asshat, and so's the school board for declining to contest his decision.

But most of the people who showed up to speak at the meeting spoke in her favor. The yearbook editor allowed herself to be dismissed rather than do the wrong thing. Her parents are behind her and are paying the bucks to get the picture in the yearbook as an ad.

The principal et al have really succeeded in nothing but looking like idiots. And I think a lot of the student body is going to get that.

(Of course, I still regret that the girl had to encounter all this BS at all.)
posted by Zed_Lopez at 10:21 AM on March 2, 2005


Captaintripps: Everything is not a rights or constitutional issue. I fail to see what rights she had in this instance, exactly, to participate in something she had to shell out dough for.

True not everything is a rights issue. Can we not rail against something that is just unfair? Sometimes life is unfair but I don't think anyone should be going out of their way to make it that way (as the school is in this case). In fact I think we should be striving for fairness in all our actions and then lend a hand to those who still need it.
posted by Mitheral at 10:33 AM on March 2, 2005


I obviously have been corrupted by The Gay Agenda™ because I really don't get this. How is letting the kid wear a suit jacket a problem? Her gender/sex identity has nothing to do with it. She didn't want to be draped. I remember those things and I don't blame her at all. It's the only garment that can make every girl around look like the front of a boat.

(I had the misfortune to attend a Floridian high school, and the arbitrary dress code was very impractical. None of us kids ever grokked why we were not allowed to wear tank tops or sandals when the temperature outside neared a hundred degrees and the air conditioning inside the classrooms was spotty at best. For graduation, we all had to wear these horrid poly-nylon-plastic robes. In Florida. In July. The things breathed as well as trash bags. Lots of Nice Clothes got badly damaged by sweat stains at that event.)
posted by cmyk at 10:55 AM on March 2, 2005


Can I iterate that I honestly don't care? Some of you have taken my position and twisted it into some kind of anti-lesbian bullshit. I don't care that she's wearing a tux. It does not bother me, as a person, at all. I'm not uncomfortable with it or anything of the sort. I just think it would have been smart to discuss it beforehand. She dumped the issue into the lap of the prinicpal and he made a call, based on precedent, tradition, whatever. I can't blame him for that. However, had she approached the situation long before being "forced" to wear a tux by going to the school board or whoever and asking for permission not to wear a dress and the they STILL voted against her, I would say that is ridiculous. Follow me now?
posted by Witty at 11:12 AM on March 2, 2005


Ahem, of course the two things are worlds apart.... but Padilla and tux girl do share a kind of odd correlation. Unwritten law/rules made up by specific persons. In my mind, if it isn't written down you shouldn't be held to a specific legal standard. How can someone go to the school board and ask for an exemption from an unwritten rule?

I understand what you are getting at Witty, and am not slamming you, but I disagree, and fail to see why this needed to be such a big issue for the authorities in question.
posted by edgeways at 11:36 AM on March 2, 2005


It sure doesn't sound like she planned it, Witty. She was given a choice at the picture taking, and decided to take the tux. While it's possible she did plan on doing that, it could also have been a random shrug-your-shoulders decision.
posted by agregoli at 12:07 PM on March 2, 2005


jiawen : Oh, I didn't mean to sound like I was saying TG issues shouldn't be brought up at all, I was just trying to differentiate between "lesbian" and "TG" since I had read a few comments previously in the thread that used the two interchangably, which I thought needed to be corrected. Sorry if I went too far in the other direction!

I was mostly reacting to others in the thread labelling the girl as TG, which I felt was erroneous considering that there was nothing other than the wearing of a tux to suggest this. Same way that I react internally anytime I encounter people who are not out being called "gay" in conversation for no real reason. I don't think that it's fair for someone to have assumptions being made about hir identity without being able to speak up about it.

Anyway, long comment... my point : I hope you didn't take offense at anything I wrote earlier. My intentions were good. :)
posted by grapefruitmoon at 12:21 PM on March 2, 2005


Bizarre, I didn't know schools still did that assigned clothes thing. My mom's HS picture had that, and I always found it kind of creepy. Not even in a conformist sort of way, though. More of a "why would the school want to insist on girls dressed so that half their chest is hanging out?" way. Most schools wouldn't allow someone to wear something as low cut as those drapes in the classroom.

I bet if she had called the principal a pervert for wanting all the underage girls to dress in such revealing clothes they would have backed down in a second.
posted by Kellydamnit at 12:31 PM on March 2, 2005


dirtynumbangelboy: When I said I personally don't get what the big deal is, you misunderstood me. I don't get what the big deal is ... let her wear the damn tux.

Most schools wouldn't allow someone to wear something as low cut as those drapes in the classroom.

No joke. Had I tried to wear something resembling any of the drapes I have seen in high school year books to school, the principal would have had a heart attack. We had a strict dress code (not even anything sleeveless for heaven's sake), and yet on senior picture day, there I was sitting in front of a camera wearing only a strapless bra, a bit of satin and feathers, with everyone standing around staring. It was embarrassing. I wish I would have thought to ask to wear the tux.

I don't even think being a lesbian comes into it. She was uncomfortable showing cleavage. She shouldn't have to show cleavage to make the school admins happy. No girl should. Period.
posted by Orb at 1:09 PM on March 2, 2005


I wanted to wear a tux to my high school prom, but only if my boyfriend wore a dress. He wasn't that enthused about the idea of the dress or the prom, so we just decided to skip the event all together. We probably wouldn't have been allowed in anyway. Some friends and I wanted to tie dye our white graduation robes, which was of course, forbidden. As I recall, I penned a melodramatic editorial for highschool newspaper comparing the administration and the Jostens representative to nazis. I'm embarrassed about the editorial, but I'd be delighted if there were pictures of me accepting my diploma in psychedelic colors.

My mom took my senior pictures. There were some really nice ones where I had a willow wreath in my hair. I was told that unauthorized head adornments were forbidden.

While I wasn't being discrimination against, as Kelli Davis may be, it still sucked. Why do highschool officials have to be such a drag?

Like Eddie Izzard, I believe in "total clothing rights."
posted by apis mellifera at 1:26 PM on March 2, 2005


There are very few things in life that are actually unwritten rules; most of what passes for unwritten rules are just things that no one even considers doing differently.

Apparently, you can't wear clothes of your own choosing. They bring in clothes for you to wear. It's really not at all surprising that, when shown a dress and a tux, most girls will just instinctively put on the dress. And the guys will probably just put on the tux.

But unless there was a written rule, there was nothing to ask permission for. It's not a kid's responsibility to figure out which things that are not prohibited might make someone upset and make sure it's okay to do those things. I don't have any major problem with minors being subjected to unfair rules that don't make any sense, as long as the kids know the rules before hand. Kids shouldn't be punished (and having to pay to get your senior photo in the yearbook is a punishment) for doing things that the administration didn't bother making rules about until after they realized that someone might do the thing for which there was no rule about.
posted by 23skidoo at 1:37 PM on March 2, 2005


So, we're all opposed to crotchety old deans? Good.
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:49 PM on March 2, 2005


I got dumped by my boyfriend senior year of high school (a month before the prom) for a girl who wore a tux to their prom. That hurt. I've held a grudge against girls who dress like men for special occasions since.
Down with chicks in tuxes!!!


Seriously, though, what a retarded principal. Let the girl wear a damn tux if that's her thing.
posted by aGreatNotion at 2:41 PM on March 2, 2005


Grapefruitmoon: No problemo. I think your post was very useful; people often need to be reintroduced to TG issues a few times before they learn. :)

To some extent, though, I'm not so sure on the identification thing... If a guy identifies as an MSM (men who have sex with men), or just a guy who likes to go on the lowdown, but reacts violently to the term "gay", does that make him not homosexual/bisexual? If Richard Branson says he's not rich, do we have to call him middle-class? More broadly put, if someone belongs (by definition) to a group, but maintains that they don't, do we respect their right to self-identification, or follow the definitions? To some extent, we have to be free to use labels on people as long as the labels are used accurately. Self-definition is very important, though, and certainly with an issue like transgenderism, the definitions are far from clear or settled. Because of that, I totally respect her right to self-definition. But according to my own definitions, she's definitely in some part TG.

Still and all, it's good to remember the difference between G and L and B and T.
posted by jiawen at 2:59 PM on March 2, 2005


Optimus Chyme - thanks for the relevant e-mail addresses ... I've sent my opinions onto the folks you list.

spock - amen: "I believe that everyone should have the right to look back on their yearbook picture with shame."
posted by ericb at 7:15 PM on March 2, 2005


"When uniformity is compromised, then authority no longer holds."

Wow. Just, wow.

I wonder if she'll feel the same way when they refuse to allow her grad picture in her favorite brown shirt.
posted by [expletive deleted] at 8:10 PM on March 2, 2005


Does anybody here remember how cheesy yearbook photos for teenage girls can be? At my high school, if a girl had any almost any neck or shoulder showing, the pervy photographer would use this gauzy background that would make some girls look like they were rising topless out of a cloud. Needless to say, some parents were a bit creeped out about it. If the photographer's pervy enough, parents would be begging to put their daughters in tuxedos!
posted by jonp72 at 9:19 PM on March 2, 2005


"When uniformity is compromised, then authority no longer holds."

Alas, thus ever to authority.
posted by nearlife at 10:15 PM on March 2, 2005


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