Great article in the WSJ about the debate over today’s high school kid’s dancing.
They’re oblivious no longer. A new resolve by school officials in this booming Dallas suburb to crack down on sexually suggestive dancing — and skimpy clothing — has sparked a rancorous debate over what boundaries should be set for teenagers’ self-expression. Argyle joins a long list of other schools around the country that have banned the hip-hop inspired dancing known as “grinding” or “freak dancing.”
… The dancing dispute is proving tougher to resolve. “Our community needs to show these students how much we value them by not allowing them to devalue themselves,” says Spencer Jefferies, father of a sophomore girl, who supports Mr. Ceyanes’s efforts. Others disagree. “We never had a problem before,” said one of the more outspoken parents, Barbara Roberts. She says she spent $400 for her 17-year-old daughter’s dress only to have her leave the dance after a few minutes because it was such a dud.
Students defend their style of dancing, blaming the disagreement on the same sort of generation gap that turned Elvis Presley’s swiveling hips into a public controversy in 1956. Some Argyle teens say they realize grinding might look erotic, but they insist it’s just dancing, not sex. “We don’t think of it that way,” says Ferrin Bavousett, 17. “When we dance, we don’t mean, ‘Hey, after the dance you want to go to La Quinta?'” referring to a nearby motor hotel.
Yeah, it’s hard to object to this and not sound like a prudish parent. But, come on — these kids are dancing together like strippers giving a lap dance! Can’t we find a little common ground here?