Earlier this month, an Alaskan teen competed in her high school swim meet, blew the race out of the water with her win, only to climb out of the pool with that euphoric feeling of success to be told she was disqualified because of her body.
And the reason for her disqualification being, her swimsuit, the suit approved by the school and handed out to every swimmer on the team, was deemed inappropriate due to it riding so far up, that it became uncomfortable for the official to watch.
Basically, this young athlete, who was speeding through the water, got a wedgie, therefore, her win was taken from her.
I could only imagine the emotions the swimmer went through, from that winner's high to crashing down and feeling that her body failed her. Something that is completely out of her control caused her to lose a race she's trained hard for. This story brought on similar incidents with famous tennis star, Serena Williams. People are too busy critiquing what these women are wearing to pay attention to them demolishing the competition.
Was it body shaming because the athlete is a fuller figured girl or was it due to her race since she is black? That was the argument after the official's call, especially since this official was said to have critiqued the student's younger sibling's swimsuit in the past.
The official's call was found to be ridiculous, obviously, since athletes cannot control the way a uniform moves around while they are competing.
What is appalling is what another parent said in reference to the girls' swim team, "You girls need to cover up for the sake of my boys."
A parent also took a photo of the girl on the swim deck and shared it around as evidence that her suit was inappropriate, according to the school district. The assistant principal stepped in and "indicated to the parent who took the photographs that it was not permissible for him to take pictures of others' children and that he should stop immediately." — Time
When do we draw the line of what is deemed appropriate? Even with a school-provided uniform, people found something to complain about. The question is if this swimmer had lost the meet, would she still have been disqualified? In my opinion, I believe they would have left her alone.
This isn't the first time a female is judged harshly for what she is wearing, and sadly, I do not see it being the last. When we have a parent making statements that girls need to cover up for the sake of boys, it just shows how much people still blame females for the actions of their male counterparts. It is a sad truth that we, as females, have to undergo and it isn't fair. People should be held accountable for their actions without shifting blame. The reality is, no one ever wants to own up to their actions and will continue to point that finger at someone else, despite the person's innocence. There needs to be an end to this ugly story.
When it comes to dress attire for males and females, there is a double standard that cannot be denied. I have seen it. Females are judged more on their appearance than males, starting in school and leading on to adulthood. Men and women can be dressed in what is considered inappropriate clothing, but the women will always be the person who is told is showing too much skin.
We must protect our innocent men of the evil temptress because that is just what women want... to be objectified and told we need to cover up.
This high school athlete only received a bitter hint of what she is to expect for the rest of her life. She learned at 17 years of age, that men and women will judge her for not who she is or how excellent she performs, but on her appearance, be it body image or race, or ethnicity.