April 27th, 2006

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02:13 am - 1KWFFH: on hometown hotties on the cyberbathroom wall...

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1KWFFH: on hometown hotties on the cyberbathroom wall... - graffiti.maverick — LiveJournal

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[User Picture]From: sabranee Date: April 27th, 2006 - 11:09 pm (Link)
My main problem with this is that the girls are being treated like property. Seriously, I understand the constraints of not being able to talk to the victims here (and yeah, they are victims of harassment, but not of rape), but there must have been one girl from the school - on the list or not - and over the age of 18 who could have made a statement.
Does a list like this create a hostile learning environment? Eh. Probably. But since the gov't compells students to school, I'd say that the sexual harassment issue is a poor case to make.
If it's done off school property, without school resources, and no gov't money is involved, there's precious little the gov't can do.
And the girls shouldn't be sheltered by their parents. If anything's going to empower them, it's the ability to speak out against their harassers. Surely the high school has some quasi-feminist club or even a female Student Board member willing to denounce this. Someone should speak on behalf of the girls who's not claiming ownership of their bodies as their parents/school officials seem to.
Also, the school should respond by getting sexual assault peer educators to come in to talk to the kids. I did this when I was in DC and it was always a good way to foster discussion about gender roles, harassment, assault and rape - real, productive debate and discussion that'd have the kids yelling and giggling and crying all at once. Opening a dialogue, rather than cutting all forms of speech off, is the way to do this.
There's also the small matter of being told that kicking an assailant in the nuts is a bad idea. A pen in the ear canal, however, can work wonders. Arm people with that knowledge and see how respectful those boys start being.
[User Picture]From: chrismaverick Date: April 27th, 2006 - 11:31 pm (Link)
Well said. Well you know, if you want to be all serious about everything. :-)

Actually, I quite agree with much of this, and that's what I was getting at. I have no problem with the school frowning upon this. I'm ok with a mandatory assembly denouncing sexual harrassment. If it can indeed be proven that the ballots or list were produced or distributed on school property, I could even see detention or similar disciplinary action. But even as far as sexual harassment goes, this is just extremely tame. So I can't see taking actual legal action. I understand that some people are more sensitive to sexual harassment than others. I understand that there are different views of appropriateness. That said, I think its wrong to infringe upon one student's constitutional rights to make another student feel better. In the end, no damage was done to these girls. None at all. Maybe they feel bad, and that's a shame. But they weren't actually injured. They weren't actually even permanently emotionally harmed. There was no malice behind it. Its a tough world, out there. High school is supposed to prepare you for that. I'm of the belief that overly punishing these boys won't at all teach them a lesson other than perhaps a mistrust of the system and in reality will have the ultimate effect of giving the girls who were "victems" unrealistic views of society and the world, thus making them more fragile and susceptible to harassment in the future. In any case, I'm quite certain that if this goes much further, the ACLU will be all over it.

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