Are Father/Daughter Dances Sexist?

Illustration for article titled Are Father/Daughter Dances Sexist?

Daddy/daughter dances are almost always creepy. But do they constitute gender discrimination? If you're in Rhode Island they do.

Cranston, Rhode Island's school has traditionally held both a father/daughter dance and a mother/son baseball game as a way to promote parent-child bonding, but also (I suspect) because at least one school staffer wants an excuse to make "Motherboy" jokes once a year. But after a single mother complained that she wasn't able to participate in the father-daughter dance with her child, the district has cancelled both events on the grounds that specifying what gender the participants must be constitutes a form of gender discrimination not exempted from Rhode Island law.

First, let's anticipate the comments on this news story — "UGH, single mothers! Ruining everything again." "Blacks! It's the blacks!" "Obama's fault!" "GIVE ME A BREAK WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!" "Sluts should keep their legs closed." "What is WRONG WITH AMERICA?!?!" "Vote for Ron Paul!"

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Now that we've got that out of the way — Rhode Island's situation is unique because while at the federal level father/daughter dances are specifically exempted from definitions of gender discrimination, in the state of Rhode Island, they're not. Which means that a school that continued to hold gender-specific events like mother-son baseball games could be putting itself in a position to get sued, which is pretty much the #1 thing that school districts do not want to happen to them.

Of course, a Republican candidate for public office has vowed that, if elected, he will remedy this egregious violation of a father's right to embarrass his daughter by trying to do the Dougie in front of her friends. Stay tuned for more details as this game-changer of a story develops.

[Providence Journal]

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DISCUSSION

DoraDoraBoBora
DoraDoraBoBora

When I got married, the only blood relative I had at my wedding was my grandmother... I'd never even KNOWN my father. When I wanted my Gran to walk me down the aisle since she practically raised me, the wedding coordinator looked at me like I had two heads and tried to convince me into letting my husband's Grandfather give me away because it was "more traditional". I had nothing against the guy, who was an incredibly fun and generous person, but he had only come into my life within the last year. I got my way, but I still remember how flustered it made people. It was super weird, especially since my husband didn't get what the fuss was about either. (I remember finding out later from my brother-in-law that my husband got borderline hostile with the wedding coordinator when she "voiced concerns" about it because he wanted me to have what made ME happy, not what made her traditions happy.)