Sunday, October 13, 2013

Thank you, Miley

Jillian, my 16 year old, went to a great competition with her robotics team today.  This was the only opportunity all season to attend a girls-only meet.  (Okay, the guys were in the pit to lend a mechanical hand, but all drive teams were girls-only.)
Today's competition uniform

If you're not familiar with robotics, let me clue you in. With the guidance of their mentors, the kids start from scratch using their engineering skills to create a robot they then take to competitions.  (Visit TechFire's website for more details.)  During these competitions, there is always entertainment.  Today there was a bomb squad demo displaying their bomb disarming robots.  Mini robots were on hand for younger siblings to try out. And there was dancing.  Oh, so much dancing, to music provided by a professional DJ.

Today's contest was held at an all-girls Catholic high school near Philadelphia.  When Robin Thicke's Blurred Lines started pumping through the room, spectating mothers bristled.  "The date rape song?  They're playing the date rape song?"   But you know what?  We didn't do anything.  We didn't get up and stop the song from being played.  We didn't want to make a scene.  We let our daughters down.
Changing the battery at a demo this summer as the guys look on

Jillian and her teammates in the pit picked up on the song.  Jill had never heard it, so she didn't understand what the problem was.  But the other teammates knew exactly what it was and they weren't happy.  Two of the girls left the prep area and told the DJ to turn it off.  Those girls stood up for themselves when we mommas were afraid of causing a scene!

So thank you, Miley, for allowing us to have conversations with our daughters about how the media impacts them.  Thank you, Miley, for setting a really bad example so our daughters would know when to set a good one.  Despite your attention seeking nonsense, you've taught our daughters a valuable lesson:  Speak up when you're not comfortable with the environment around you.  Speak up when women are being told "they want it", even in song lyrics.  Just speak up.

They were incredible today.  I'm proud of the STEM skills they're developing.  But more than that, I'm impressed by their demand for respect and their growing sense of self.  It's amazing the things robotics can teach!

And PS:  Thank you to the parents of the guys on the team for never treating our daughters with kid-gloves.  You've raised good sons who are growing into respectful, intelligent men.  And thanks, Robin Thicke, for being a pig and allowing our sons to hear loud and clear that this is NOT acceptable behavior.

No comments:

Post a Comment