When two members of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Sugar Mocs dance team objected to a brief new uniform, they were told: wear it or be benched.
Click to viewThe new uniforms, ordered over the summer, made their debut at a Homecoming game. But when the uniform proved to involve a pair of microscopic booty shorts, senior Jennifer Cardwell and junior Shawna O'Neal balked, and asked if they could wear flesh-hued tights underneath. No dice. And after being given the "choice" of removing said tights or being benched, they went with the latter.
Reports News Channel 9,
Associate Vice Chancellor of Student Development Dee Dee Anderson explained the team had previously decided to wear the shorts without tights, so others didn't have them the night of the game, and they all needed to match. She says now they're looking at other options. "The coach understand those concerns and is addressing that." Anderson says she approved the uniforms. "These shorts are typical for dance lines, dance shorts that are made for this, it's not a uniform that's unusual."
The coach has said that foregoing tights was a team vote, and that further uniform decisions will also be on a democratic basis.
We get the matching thing, but these uniforms are ridiculous. And according to one of the dancers, Megan Nash, it wasn't just a modesty issue. As she told the UT Echo,
At first the shorts fit right, but after we started dancing the shorts shifted and I was showing more skin than I would have liked to...I've seen pictures of myself after the game and couldn't believe I wore them. I was embarrassed to represent my school like that in front of 17,000 people.
She adds that had they been given a dress rehearsal in the uniforms, she believes more of the dancers would have objected, and "the tights that they were wearing under the shorts were skin colored so it's not like it was very noticeable from a distance, and the tights are part of our uniform so I can't see how they could have been considered out of uniform."
Of course, the fact that the women are cheer dancers will lead some (jerks) to dismiss their claims. Dispiriting evidence of this? Comments on News Channel 9's story include "If they're really worried about their modesty, then they probably should not have chosen to go into cheerleading — where most of the guys in the stands are ogling them all the time anyway" and "They must have fat thighs & scared of being made fun of." Things like this are especially depressing and infuriating when you actually check out some of their routines: this is a serious, disciplined squad of talented dancers — and they're great!