Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Hairstyles and Attitudes

| February 15, 2007 11:00 PM

Is it really 2007, or did we somehow just get transported back to 1957?

One wonders after hearing Troy parent Brian Miller's claim that someone, apparently a school official, issued a directive barring his son from playing basketball with his hair in a ponytail because "it makes the team look homosexual."

This kind of comment might have been expected in an age when anyone sporting a hairstyle longer than a crewcut was suspect, but in today's world it's ridiculous.

According to Miller, the Troy basketball coach told his younger son he couldn't wear his hair in a ponytail at games in Troy or Libby. The order supposedly came from "greater powers" than the coach, who declined to comment on the issue.

It might be appropriate for a coach to bar certain hairstyles for reasons of safety or even simply to convey a more professional image, but out of homophobia? That's every bit as unacceptable as telling a kid he can't wear baggy pants because it makes him look "black."

Miller was unable to attend Tuesday's school board meeting but, through a letter read by his older son (not the boy with the ponytail), he provided the board with his account of what happened and asked for an apology.

If Miller's version of this story is true, he's justified in his request to the school board. Someone owes his son an apology. - Brent Shrum