Bear with me for a 'graph and a half ...
I can’t speak like a pirate. Today is “National Talk Like a Pirate Day” and even though I’ve watchedPirates of the Caribbean and each sequel in excess of 20 times, my piratedialect is nothing short of embarrassing. It’s not an inadequacy. It’s justwho I am and I can live with that. But when I see all these show-offs saying “Arrrrmatey” and “Man the mop swabbie”, I feel I am unfairly discriminated against. No,I don’t think people do it purposely. They do it out of ignorance so I know Iam justified when I call for an end to the very offensive “Talk Like a PirateDay”.
Likewise, my wife’sdad left her mom (or was it the other way around? Not sure but neither here northere) when my wife was 14. When the daddy-daughterdance came along, what was she to do? Well, unfortunately for her, the ACLUfigured it out about 27 years too late. Yep, 27 years ago they could have just done away with the entirepractice altogether. Instead, my wife had to endure (end sarcasm) one of her favoritememories accompanying her best friend and best friend’s dad to the joyous event. I guess you could say she “stagged it” but,yes, still it is a cherished memory for my wife.
Rhode Island has banned Father-Daughter dances andMother-Son ball games. The ban was prompted when one single-mom cried foulsince her daughter had no daddy to escort her. I’d say what that poor girl lacks is a mom with creativity or without issuesdealing with men. Even in the mostardent, man-or-woman-hating, single-parent atmosphere, someone emerges as afather or mother figure in the lives of children being raised by just oneparent. The girl can go to the dance ifshe so desires, yet rather than having to face the facts of her daughter’smisfortune and her own poor planning in life, this mom would have NO ONE attendsuch an event.
It’s gender discrimination they say …
The ACLU says, “In 2012 not everygirl necessarily wants to grow up and be Cinderella, some might actually liketo go out on the baseball field and a public school of all places should not besuggesting otherwise…”
Why do women wear adress and men a tux at a gender-mixed wedding? Why do girls tend to play with dolls and boystinker toys or footballs? Is itstereotyping and mind shaping? What does“2012” have to do with it anyway? Who would name their boy "Sue"?
It doesn't really matter ...
Red herrings exposed, what’s being missed in all thispoliticizing, is that these events are meant to encourage interactions betweenparents and their children. It’s aimedat stretching the parents to act beyond an innate comfort zone. It’s not about whether or not little Sallywould rather attend a ball game than a dance. It’s about Mom. You know? Mom:that lady who spends some breath every week scolding dad for watching “football,AGAIN?” It’s about Dad. You know? Dad:the guy who’d rather attend an Ogden Raptors game, than dip mom on the dancefloor wearing his finest threads and smelling like a freshly pampered Julio Iglesias.
By and large (To misuse a nautical term. [Yes ... it's nautical] Seee? Landlubbers just shouldn't try that pirate thang) Boys are different from girls.
Generalizations recognized, let’s not throw out the baby with thebath water, people. Let’s embrace ourdifferences. Let’s enjoy rather thandemonize tradition. We’ve come to a fork in the road (I almost saidRhode). One sign leads to a Rhode (snap,did it anyway) less taken and reads, “If we can’t please everyone, we shouldplease no one.” On the other road, orshall we just call it “the beaten path”, a more tattered sign reads, “I learnedmy lesson well”.