"As someone who holds a strong commitment to the feminist ideals and desire to raise my daughter to be a strong and empowered woman able to make choices for herself, I find that the school's dress code policy does not align with my belief system."
A Tennessee mom's stance against optional mask mandates is winning the internet after a scathing email she wrote to her school board at Hamilton County Schools went viral on social media. Pointing out the double standards behind enforcing notoriously misogynistic dress codes while making potentially life-saving masks optional, the unidentified mother informed the board that her teenage daughter would be opting out of all school dress code restrictions. Her email added fuel to the debates over school mask mandates after screenshots of the stinging letter were tweeted by The Tennessee Holler over the weekend.
🔥EMAIL FROM CHATTANOOGA MOM TO @hamcoschools (Chattanooga): “Since you made the mask policy optional, I intend to opt my daughter out of the dress code. Please make note.” @NoogaHoller pic.twitter.com/Xvv26Q1Vnm— The Tennessee Holler (@TheTNHoller) August 12, 2021
"Good evening, I am writing to request the parent opt-out form to opt-out of the school dress code," the unidentified mom from Chattanooga, Tennessee, began. "As the parent of a daughter at East Hamilton, I find the school's dress code policy to be misogynistic and detrimental to the self-esteem of young women. Rather than shaming young women into covering their shoulders (and other parts of their body), I believe we should empower female students to have agency over their bodies and to wear clothing that is comfortable for them and contributes to their ability to enhance their learning experience."
With Covid cases spiking in Tennessee and elementary students unable to get vaccinated, Williamson County's school mask mandate is as commonsense as it gets. Anti-maskers melted down in hysterical fashion at a school board meeting anyway. https://t.co/2y1HE2qDQG— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 11, 2021
"In light of the opt-out option related to the recently announced mask mandate, I can only assume that parents are now in a position to pick and choose the school policies to which their child should be subject," she continued. "As someone who holds a strong commitment to the feminist ideals and desire to raise my daughter to be a strong and empowered woman able to make choices for herself, I find that the school's dress code policy does not align with my belief system. I, therefore, intend to opt-out of this policy and send my daughter to school in spaghetti straps, leggings, cut-offs, and anything else she feels comfortable wearing to school."
"I hope my letter will inspire others to make their voice heard” ❤️ 🗣— The Tennessee Holler (@TheTNHoller) August 12, 2021
Shout-out to @wirecan & @RawStory for picking up on our post about the CHATTANOOGA MOM “opting-out” of the dress code after @hamcoschools allows opting out of masks. 😷 @NoogaHoller https://t.co/Adp9p4z1da
"Please make a note that she is not, under any circumstances, to be dress coded, as I have clearly communicated my decision to opt-out of this policy," she concluded. Speaking to Raw Story after her email went viral, the mom explained that her intention was to show board members that making exceptions to rules based on belief systems opened them up to other challenges and to also point out that it shouldn't be that hard to enforce a mask mandate during a pandemic. "While I disagree with the dress code policy, I'm not really in this to fight that policy," she said.
Me as a Mom. I’ve written several strongly worded e-mails to school in the past about things that have come up over the years with my children. LOVE THIS!!!! And yes, yes & YES! https://t.co/FF6kvFDl6m— Ally ✨ (@AllyNicole212) August 13, 2021
"My goal is to draw attention to the importance of mask usage in our schools. We need to base decisions around this issue on medical data and be guided by the recommendations of experts in this area. But I'm up for fighting the dress code once we get the mask issue taken care of. We should be guided by science and the recommendation of experts, not by what Tucker Carlson says. Our cases and hospitalization rates in Hamilton County have spiked up in a big way the past few weeks. We are back to where we were last February. It's very discouraging. There is a very loud contingency agitating against mask use, but I do not believe they are representative of most of us who want to keep ourselves and others safe," she added.
This is mom goals to the highest extent. What people wear is no-one else’s business, and it’s everyone’s job to not sexualize other people’s choices in dress. Also, it’s everyone’s job to not sexually assault other people.— Abby (@thatsmeNP) August 13, 2021
She's 100% correct, but why stop here? Where's the opt-out form for exams, grades, testing....?— Aaron Feldman (@AaronFeldman5) August 12, 2021
"Hardly anyone is wearing masks at this point, which is troubling given the spread of the delta variant. It is frustrating that people do not want to get vaccinated and they do not want to wear masks either," the concerned mom concluded. "I hope that my letter will inspire others to make their voice heard and to advocate for policies that will keep our children and teachers safe."