Thursday, March 08, 2007

Vagina, Vagina, Vagina

There, I said it three times. Did anyone die? Did anyone suffer an injury because I used the term which is found in the dictionary (which states it is "the lower part of the female reproductive tract; a moist canal in female mammals extending from the labia minora to the uterus").

Despite the fact that there are a variety of other words that people use for it, most of which I probably could not put up in good conscience, three girls were suspended recently for saying the word during a dramatic reading of the Vagina Monologues.

Apparently, the principal of their school felt that the word "vagina" was inappropriate for the setting. The setting, by the way, was an night of readings at the high school in the suburbs of New York, open to the public. So the principal, apparently acting as the guardian of public morals decreed that Megan Reback, Elan Stahl and Hannah Levinson, who were reading the excerpt, could not use the word "vagina" even though they were reading for the "Vagina Monologues".

However, they did when they they read the line, "My short skirt is a liberation flag in the women's army. I declare these streets, any streets, my vagina's country." Is that so bad to say?

Did anyone ever tell him what happens when you issue an order you know will not be obeyed? Did he really believe that three honors students, juniors who seems to be able to distinguish between a valid instruction and a petty tyranny, would really follow this instruction? They seem to have fully understood what they were doing when they did it. "The word vagina has been arbitrarily declared taboo, which it's not," student Megan Reback said. "It's a part of the body. We are women. We have vaginas."

Or, if he was so concerned about the subject material in the first place, why did he approve it? And since when did the word "vagina", become a word that is inappropriate, especially in the context that it is used in that play.

I understant that the Supreme Court has draw a clear distinction when it comes to student's freedom of speech, but is this really what was intended?

These girls are owed an apology and the principal is owed a time out of his own.

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