ENGLISH 1101 Dec 04, 2019
Research and audience assignment
“Women shouldn’t have to dress modesty to be respected or to avoid distractions.” The topic I chose is important because women shouldn’t be seen as an object by society. People need to comprehend that choosing the way you want to dress is a way of self expression, and that restricting women from certain clothes is not right. Every time women wear a skirt or a shirt that shows cleavage, they automatically are seen as objects, people forget their humanity in the process. Society has the misconception that women wear certain kind of clothes to be provocative, since that idea has been built up throughout the years, now women are restricted from dress as they want because they couldn’t be respected and would cause distractions if they wear certain kinds of clothes. Society needs to understand that if a man is getting distracted by the way a woman is dressed, that’s their problem; not the way the woman is dressed.
The genre I chose to deliver my message regarding this issue is letter, I chose it because I feel that sending a letter to address such an important issue can be more personal and deep. Also people tend to take letters more seriously than emails.
1ST LETTER, AUDIENCE: School’s principal.
4306 63rd St
Woodside, NY 11377
04 December 2019
William Cullen Bryant HS Principal
48-10 31 Avenue
LIC, NY 11103
Dear Mr. Miller,
I am writing you this letter because I wanted to express some concerns that had come to my mind regarding the dress code your school follows, my main goal for sending you this letter is to inform you and hopefully make you reconsider some of the restrictions of your school’s dress code. I know as a fact that your school restricts women from different kind of clothes because they “can be distracting and provocative” for students and male teachers.
Women shouldn’t have to dress modesty to be respected or to avoid distractions.The problem with controlling the way women dress in an effort to control the responses of other people is that clothing itself is not the problem. Our society is conditioned to see women as objects. Their bodies are already over-sexualized even as young teens. This means that whenever we see a woman who bares her legs, cleavage, or even her collarbones, we reduce them automatically to objects rather than multifaceted human beings. We forget their humanity in the process. In your school’s case the dress code restricts women from different kinds of clothes.
Dress Codes are in schools for the good of the students and the teachers. But dress codes aren’t always good for the students, especially the female students. There are almost always more rules and guidelines for the female students than there are for the male students. Why? If a girl is showing something that shows even a little skin or maybe a bra strap, their attire is considered “distracting” to boys and male teachers and they are then ”’dress coded”.Now, I do believe that a dress code is important in some aspects. If a girl is wearing a shirt that shows her whole stomach and maybe a little bit of the underside of her breasts, that might be considered distracting to everyone, I know I would think that that was distracting. Or maybe if a boy is wearing his pants too low and they are sagging a lot, I know I would also consider that inappropriate and distracting. But when a girl gets dress coded because of a strap that is showing or maybe because her shirt is a little too tight, that’s just not fair. Sometimes girls are even sent home because of the way they’re dressed, no girl should ever have to forfeit her education because her shirt is the wrong color or she has a hole in her jeans. Sometimes girls get dress coded for something that’s not even listed as inappropriate in the dress code guidelines. While some parts of the dress code are reasonable, some are just plain absurd. The school’s dress code needs to portray the idea that women are not objects that are distractions for men, it needs to show them that girls are just as important and that if a boy cannot stay focused during class because of another student who needs to learn just as much as he does, that it is not the way a certain student is dressed or the girl student fault. Thank you for reading this, I hope this makes you rethink some of the school’s dress code guidelines, and consider to make some changes to it.
2ND LETTER, AUDIENCE: PARENTS FROM QUEENS SCHOOL DISTRICT
4306 63rd St
Woodside, NY 11377
04 December 2019
Parents of Queens School District
Queens School District Offices
98-50 50th Ave,
Corona, NY 11368
Dear parents, I am writing you this letter because I want to express my concern towards how some parents are not allowing their daughters to dress as they desire to. The Purpose of this letter is to make you think about how a girl may feel when you do not allow her to dress as they want to.
Just because you have been raised in a society that has the misconception that women wear certain clothes to be provocative and also that men would disrespect and get distracted by the way women dress, it’s not fair for teen girls to be restricted to express themselves by the way they desire to dress. Teen girls should be allowed to wear what they want to wear. It should be maintained a balance of deciding what’s appropriate in an ever-shifting clothing landscape and conveying that to your daughters in a way that does not make them feel like their bodies are shameful, embarrassing things, or that what they wear on those bodies somehow excuses inappropriate behavior from others. that you have to discuss with them what is appropriate and not appropriate to wear to school, work, family reunions, hanging out with friends,etc. It is better to have that discussion rather than tell a girl “That is too revealing” or “Go get changed, you are not allowed to wear that”, that can make your daughters feel similar as to asking a sexual assault victim, “What were you wearing?” Your daughters have to keep the idea that clothing doesn’t cause rape; rapists cause rape. Advising your daughters to cover up blurs that message by implying that her body becomes an irresistible temptation when she shows too much of it. Girls should not be fearing on how people would react to the way she’s dressed. That misconception should stay in the past, and your daughters’ generation should grow thinking that they can express themselves by the way they want to dress, as long as they are being appropriate.
If you restrict your daughters from different clothes you’ll probably causing them to keep secrets from you. They will know you wouldn’t approve the way they want to dress and so she will learn not to share anything with you. Do you want your child sneaking off with a second set of clothing in her bag as she went off to school? I don’t think you would want her to think that in order to be “her” she has to be different around you and to keep secrets from you.
Women shouldn’t be seen as an object, society has created the misconception that every time a girl or woman wears something “too revealing” they are doing it to call men’s attention and that they would react in a disrespectful way. If you raise your daughter by restricting them from showing their personality by the way they want to dress just because men would get distracted and be disrespectful towards them. You will cause your daughters to be scared of being themselves. As long as girls are dressing appropriately for the occasion and are showing self respect in the way they’re dressed, you should be allowed to let them wear what they want.
I hope that this information would help and make you reconsider what you are allowing and not allowing your daughters to wear.
Barret, Kira. “When School Dress Codes Discriminate.” NEA Today, http://neatoday.org/2018/07/24/when-school-dress-codes-discriminate. Accessed 04 December 2019.
Jones, Sasha. “Do School Dress Codes Discriminate Against Girls?” Education Week, https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2018/09/05/do-school-dress-codes-discrimate-against-girls.html?cmp=cpc-goog-ew-dynamic+ads+recent+articles&ccid=dynamic+ads+recent+articles&ccag=recent+articles+dynamic&cckw=&cccv=dynamic+ad&gclid=Cj0KCQiAz53vBRCpARIsAPPsz8UZVFhxvTijg64QFeZwv3xqguR4zFQDx4sNxnkEKsVn55M0YSjM760aAvj3EALw_wcB. Accessed 04 December 2019.
Wang, Stephanie. “Dress codes blame girls for boys’ bad behavior”, Indianapolis Star, https://www.indystar.com/story/news/education/2017/11/27/how-some-say-washington-township-schools-dress-code-blames-girls-boys-bad-behavior/840061001/. Accessed 04 December 2019.
Levin-Epstein, Amy. “Letting Kids Choose What They Wear”, Parents, https://www.parents.com/toddlers-preschoolers/development/social/letting-kids-choose-what-they-wear/. Accessed 04 December 2019.
Alw5957, “Gender & Sexuality”, Gender Sexuality, https://sites.psu.edu/awcivicissue/2018/02/09/distracting-dress-codes/. Accessed 04 December 2019.