Monday, June 6, 2011

Who Wears Short Shorts?

So one of the dancers auditioning for So You Think You Can Dance, who also happens to be a student at BYU, was called into the college office for counseling after he appeared on television during his audition wearing nothing but dancer shorts.

This report amuses me on several fronts. First of all, I'm glad to see a man being called out for immodesty. Usually it's just the ladies. It seems that BYU is at least egalitarian in this way. Better than the the Orthodox Jewish community, which has strict rules for women and loose guidelines for the men that are rather weakly enforced. Also, this student got into trouble after the school officials were told about the audition and matter after the fact. How often in the Jewish community have rabbis reacted with outrage to things they weren't there to witness, that they simply heard about? I also find the hypocrisy most agreeable. The student notes that the swim team wears just as much as much (or as little) in photos. And finally, there's the lack of context. I personally think dancer shorts are okay for dance but perhaps not appropriate for class, just as Speedos are okay at the pool. (Wait, those are never okay.) But apparently the Mormons subscribe to a similar context free view of modesty that the frum do -- namely, what's inappropriate in one situation is wrong for all. Just as you wouldn't wear a bra and underwear to the grocery store, you wouldn't wear a swimsuit to the beach. Or dancer shorts to a dance audition. Or so the context free logic goes.

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