Girls Will be Boys and Boys Will be Girls…

Grow that hair out, girl! Put on a dress! You're offending God!

Grow that hair out, girl! Put on a dress! You’re offending God!

I came across a story in my Facebook news feed today that really kind of got under my skin and pissed me off. The story can be found here.

So, for those of you too lazy to click a link, it seems that an eight-year-old girl named Sunnie Kahle (tell me that’s not the most adorable name you can imagine for a little girl, “Sunnie”) was basically told she would no longer be welcome to attend the Timberlake Christian School because she was in violation of the school’s “biblical standards.”

Sunnie is being kicked out of a Christian school with an explanation like that!? This must be a baaaaad girl! At age eight, she must be shooting up horse under the bleachers or blowing little boys in the restroom or peddling pornography during lunch recess or something just too awful to imagine, right?

Nope. Nothing like that at all. Tuirns out Sunnie is pretty much a regular eight-year-old girl. Her heinous crime that is prompting the school to threaten to refuse her admittance next year? Sunnie looks too much like a boy. According to the article, the letter received by Sunnie’s family states, in part:

“We believe that unless Sunnie as well as her family clearly understand that God has made her female and her dress and behavior need to follow suit with her God-ordained identity, that TCS is not the best place for her future education”

Apparently the school is also claiming that, “things disturbed the classroom environment,” and that Sunnie’s hair length is not the whole problem, however we are apparently not being told what is. Maybe her collection of Star Wars figures outweighs her collection of Barbie dolls by too wide a margin? Perhaps she prefers Tonka trucks to My Little Pony? The school doesn’t go as far as to actually accuse Sunnie of being something so heinous as gay or even transgendered. After all, that would be ridiculous.

What I find interesting as well is that this story follows rather closely on the heels of the story from last week about nine-year-old Grayson Bruce who was bullied by other kids at his North carolina school because he carried a My Little Pony backpack. Rather than simply punish the bullies (which they did… sort of), the school administrators told Grayson he couldn’t bring the backpack to school anymore, as it was a “distraction,” effectively sending a message to kids like Grayson that this sort of bullying is acceptable and the victims of it are the ones in the wrong.

In Sunnie’s case, however, it is the school that is doing the bullying.

I do agree with one thing, however. Clearly TCS is NOT the place for Sunnie’s (or anyone’s) continuing education.


One comment

  1. nyssalang · March 26, 2014

    I was, and am still, a lover of all things Star Wars and still prefer jeans and a t-shirt over a dress. I support Sunnie’s right to be geeky and comfortable. Such a shame there are too many gender stereotypes these days rather than raising a happy and kind generation of adults. I was hoping things had changed from when I was a kid. Apparently not all that much.

    Good luck to Sunnie though. Hope she settles in to her new school and gets the support she deserves from her teachers 🙂

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