Thursday, June 2, 2011

Graduation Day

So yesterday I attended my brother's high school graduation, which was very average for that sort of event. The most notable thing about it was that as the graduates marched up to and off of the stage, all the young men were given handshakes by the three administrators lining the stairs, while the young women were grabbed by the elbow and yanked up the stairs, as if they were incapable of walking by themselves. While there were a few girls (3 of about 60) already tottering in too-high heels, most were visibly put off balance by this gesture.

It was mildly infuriating to watch. This was an elite college prep school, which claims to be producing some of the best and the brightest students, ready to face the world and change it. How can over half the class be expected to do that when they're clearly being told that they're incapable of standing on their own two feet? While their male peers were treated with the utmost dignity and respect, these young women forced through a ritual submission to male control.

I wish I had been able to enjoy the graduation more. Instead, I sat there seething in rage on my brother's special day. Maybe by the time my sister goes across that stage, she won't be treated as disparagingly as our brother's female peers.

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