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O'Hara Factor
Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Cheerleaders and Politicians! Oh my!

In the wake of an attempt in Texas to regulate "suggestive" cheerleading, perhaps we're all being simultaneously shortsighted and paranoid. I don't have much time to make this post, so I'll be making this in the old list format as thoughts come to my head.

Are parents in the know?

If parents aren't in the know about this, I really don't know what to say. Yes, there's this thing called cheerleading and it typically happens at the football and basketball games. And no, the guys don't wear skirts. If parents were really serious about this, the bill would have come up a long time ago.

"Cheerleaders" only?

At least in my personal experience, the cheerleaders have been quite mild, at least compared to the "dance team." I won't go into details as I know at least one kid who reads this site, but we're talking about very suggestive uniforms and very suggestive moves, sometimes alongside men, and always worse than cheerleaders.

And then there's the ever-so-unenforced dress code. The sad thing is that around here at the university, sorority girls are the only ones who ever violate a typical high-school dress code, and it's not like I'm attracted to anybody wearing snow boots in April. (Note to the uninitiated: the "snow boots" part wasn't an exaggeration.)

Look at me! I'm working for YOU!

Legislators in favor of the bill in Texas are probably going for good PR. It seems to work for baseball's steroids issue, so why not for cheerleaders? Again, it's up to the parents. If this hasn't come up in a PTA meeting, it's a non-issue for the state legislature.

UPDATE:

The language of the bill reads "school dance team, drill team, cheerleading team, or similar performance group" to describe any such group, but the media attention seems to focus on the term "cheerleaders." I love it when journalists do their research before they report to us.

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