My experience with offensive clothing at TuHS

Maya Brisan, Staff Writer

Schools have a history of controlling what students wear, either with a dress code or even a uniform. It makes sense to have some sort of rules for how students dress in order to help create a safe environment where everyone can concentrate and learn.Tualatin High School doesn’t have any dress code policy anymore, and the district has made efforts to eliminate rules that have to do with sexism. However, a lot of dress codes are made with intent to control what young women wear, specifically. They rarely control what young men can wear, and this displays the obvious sexism that pervades our educational system. 

It’s great that girls feel more comfortable wearing what makes them feel good, and that is something I hope continues. As a girl, I want to wear what I like, without anyone telling me that it is distracting. As long as what I wear is decent and does not offend anyone, I should be left alone to learn and go about my life as I wish.

However, this lack of rules on clothing does not mean that a student should be able to wear literally whatever they want to, especially if it targets and hurts a specific group of people. Boys have never truly felt the pressure and injustice of needing to wear something that adults would deem “appropriate.” This seems to cause them to feel weirdly comfortable wearing clothes that are, quite frankly, obscene. 

I have seen some horrible shirts that boys have worn to school this year; shirts saying things like “girls just wanna cum,” “little dick big dreams,” shirts that fetishize Asian women and other absolutely disgusting things. How is it that, even now in a world where we are slowly but surely becoming more accepting and open-minded, shirts like these can be worn at school? Why do boys feel comfortable wearing these shirts? There has to be some part of their conscience telling them that these shirts are not okay to wear at all. 

Seeing these shirts makes me incredibly uncomfortable. I even had an anxiety attack that lasted for hours after seeing a shirt like this in one of my classes. All my friends were just as shocked as me, so I know I am not the only person affected by these horrid shirts that are worn at our school. My question is how did these boys manage to wear these demeaning shirts the entire school day? I would feel nervous confronting the people that I see wearing these shirts because I would be hesitant to create a situation where I feel unsafe due to backlash, but does anyone ever confront these boys about their disgusting shirts? Did anyone, student or adult, tell them that they shouldn’t be wearing that?

Tualatin High School should be an environment where every single student feels comfortable, accepted, and able to learn; these shirts take that opportunity away from every student that sees the shirt. Any shirt that so blatantly targets any group of people is not okay, and many privileged students most likely do not realize what their words mean to the group their words are directed to. Privilege should never ever be used to demean people, and yet privileged people have a history of doing that exact thing. This problem shows that.

It should not only be my job, as the targeted person of some of these shirts, to stand up and say it’s messed up to wear derogatory clothing. Boys of Tualatin High School, I am here asking you not to wear shirts like these. They are demeaning and incredibly offensive, and should especially not be worn in an educational setting. Also, do not be afraid to call out friends if you see them wearing something derogatory, and even call out boys you see wearing them in the hallways. Do your part to create an environment where everyone feels safe, and do not allow boys who feel comfortable wearing these shirts to get away with it.