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Innocent Sexploitation?
The tears were real. She clearly was upset while sitting in the principal’s office. Not quite 13, it seemed hard to imagine what she could have possibly done to deserve being sent “to the office”. Her crime?-- An offensive low-cut tank top. She had inadvertently (or not) exposed more to her classmates and teacher than was allowed. Now she donned a bulky sweatshirt, zipped to the neck on this unusually hot May afternoon. Sweating it out would be punishment enough, but she also faced the wrath of a principal who routinely had to deal with “wardrobe malfunctions”. This scene is played out in schools across America. Try clothes shopping for teen girls anywhere, and you will be hard pressed to find “appropriate” attire. Low cut, back exposing, thigh revealing—it’s a daily school skin show. Then we wonder why boys do not take our girls seriously, or why they can’t seem to get their mind off of sex. We can take the high road, and make everyone wear school uniforms—which can make a whole lot of sense, but is totally unrealistic. We’ve already traveled the low road, where teen girls wear what they want-usually emulating Britney Spears—and this is either with or without their parent’s knowledge. How about the middle-of-the-road? Why not educate our young girls on dressing as if they respect themselves and their peers? Why not clue them in on how they are feeding a monster by dressing the part of a harlot. Stores are stocked with clothes that sell. But we don’t have to buy the lie. There is a reason our STD rates are skyrocketing, and our national teen pregnancy rates are the highest around. We are marketing our teens for premarital sex. And this is at a time when we expect even more out of our young people. We’re smarter than the advertising folks on Madison Avenue, aren’t we? Let’s cut to the solution: parents watch your daughters. Schools have rules—enforce them. Like this poor principal who now spends a part of each day being the fashion police—we all need to do our part.

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