Sarah Fraunfelder was about to embark on a college tour with a group of other high school students when it happened. According to the 15-year-old, a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officer at the security checkpoint in LAX glared, mumbled, and then said, “You’re only fifteen, COVER YOURSELF!” after she inquired about his hostile behavior.
Shaken up, Sarah texted her father, Boing Boing blog co-founder Mark Fraunfelder, who recounted her story in a post on Sunday. With it, he shared a photo of his daughter’s outfit that day: a tank top, a plaid button-down, and leggings.
I want to pause right here to give you enough time for sighs, screams, and head-to-desk reactions.
So far, the incident has caused outrage across the web (as it should). Maureen Herman, co-founder of women’s rights group “A is For” and friend of the Fraunfelder family, published this awesome post on her group’s blog. In it, she implores women to take a stand against shaming, which she says is “a kernel of the infection of sexism.”
Herman’s words perfectly describe the hurtful and jarring experience of being shamed for the very first time—a shock that has become way too recognizable for most women, and now to 15-year-old Sarah.
“To us, things like this need to matter, because they inject shame (or try to) in a young woman who is just living her life, going to check out colleges, and throws on the first of what will unfortunately be many layers of sexism she will encounter in her life,” says Herman in her blog post.
After meeting with Sarah’s parents, the TSA at LAX opened an investigation and released a statement apologizing for the officer’s behavior. This incident represents the startling reality of a culture far too obsessed with controlling women’s bodies. Aggressive and creepy harassment needs to end so girls grow up knowing that their clothing choices are rightfully theirs, and theirs only, to make.
Source: Boing Boing
Photo via Boing Boing