Certain dress codes can be sexist or unfair toward women. After editors of MLive.com wrote an editorial adressing this, the principal of Plymouth Christian High School in Grand Rapids, Michigan wrote a surprising response.
Jim Bazen, the principal, states in his letter that schools should enforce a modest dress code for girls in order to prevent boys from sexualizing them.
Bazen explains that men are visual and therefore can't help but treat women as "sex objects." He is placing all the blame on these young women.
"The only way you can help young men not treat young ladies as sex objects is by telling the young ladies to cover up!" he says. Or, you could educate them about the proper way to treat people—which seems like a better idea to us.
After explaining his reasoning, Bazen goes on to say that he doesn't want these young women getting pregnant and losing their virginities.
"We would like them to preserve this wonderful gift (virginity) for their 'one and only,'" he says. Whether Bazen is basing his ideas off his religion or other matters, it's disrespectful for him to think he should have a say in his high school students' sexual lives.
Seventeen reports that his letter has caused backlash among other organizations in Michigan. We aren't surprised.
People.com talked to Lori Carpenter, the CEO of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan, who disagreed with Bazen.
"The best way for young people—male or female—to protect their virginity, is to learn how to set their own boundaries and to respect the boundaries of others," she told the magazine.
Dress code or not, Bazen should reevaluate the way he frames his point. It's not a woman's fault if a guy looks at her as a "sex object"—Respect, education and communication are way more effective than policing what anyone's wearing.