Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Marines Can't Go to The Prom
I found this story at Fark.com Apparently this 21 year old Marine and 17 year old senior in high school cannot attend the senior prom at Pearl River Central High School in Mississippi. The school board has a rule prohibiting students from bringing dates 21 or older to school dances.
The Marine and his girlfriend have been dating since he was 17 and she was 14. He is getting ready to deploy overseas and took leave to be able to attend his girlfriend's prom with her. Both sets of parents and the couple have appealed their case to the school board. The board met in closed session and voted not to make an exception to their case. The couple would be allowed to take photos at the prom but would be required to leave immediately afterwards.
Although the rule seems incredibly cold and absurd, I can see the reasoning behind it. Otherwise there will be students bringing dates in their mid-20s or older to school dances. It's not impossible. I can recall at my senior prom one girl brought her 26 year old date....she was 17. I wondered how seriously the guy took her. Now, not to say that it is impossible for such a relationship to be genuine and I am not trying to trash anyone's relationship with a similiar age spread. However, you have to admit: A 35 year old dating a 25 year old would be very different from a 25 year old dating a 15 year old.
It seems unfair that this couple that has been together so long would be denied admission to the prom. The Marine is getting ready to head overseas to a hazardous area and he can't take his girlfriend to the dance? However, I can see why the school board has their rule in place. You have to draw the line somewhere. If you make an exception, what's to keep someone from bringing a date ten or more years their senior? But does the school have a right to pass judgement on such a relationship by denying admission? But how proper is it for a teen to be dating someone in their mid-20s? I'm not sure what the right answer is in this case. This is one where the precedence set will have impacts long after these kids graduate.
posted by El Capitan at 12:07 AM
You're right; have to draw the line somewhere and I would assume part of the "21 & above" has to do with the inability of the school to impose rules on a legal adult? Not sure, but maybe.
At any rate, prom can be pretty lame. Go, have your photo taken and go out to a nice restaurant or whatever...then, meet up with friends at an after prom party.
I can see why they would have such a rule, however, the person in question is not 25, he's just 21. He's just at the edge of their rule.
They should make an exception simply because of the circumstances - they have been dating for awhile, he is going to ship out soon, etc.
Yeah, but.... He can buy alcohol and totally screw himself by buying for the girlfriend and others. I am sure that a lot of consideration went into this....
My knee-jerk was to beat up the school, but after thinking about it.... I think it's fair enough to get pics done and have them make their own party (school responsibility out, individual responsibility in).... It does suck, but the potential is so, well, bad....
What kind of 26 year old would WANT to go to a prom? Yech.
On the other hand... One of the girls in hubby's office (who has more problems than you would believe) went with her FATHER as her date.
And she proudly displays the pictures.