Bolo Ties Off Limits at High School Graduation

There’s an interesting little scandal I found on the AP wire
this afternoon brewing in Pomfret, Maryland an outer suburb located
southeast of D.C. There, a student with Cherokee ancestory wore a bolo
tie instead of a fabric one at his graduation ceremony, and school
officials have withheld his diploma pending a meeting with the vice
principal. A spokeswoman for the Charles County schools told the AP
that the bolo tie “was not considered by staff to be a tie. We have
many opportunities throughout the year to express cultural heritage.
But we don’t do that at graduation.? Yikes. Here’s some details:

At
a rehearsal Tuesday night, [Thomas] Benya wore a bolo tie with braided
straps and a small, silver and onyx clasp. Benya, who traces his
Cherokee ancestry to a great-grandfather who lived on a reservation in
Oklahoma, owns three of the string ties that are part of modern
American Indian traditions. He also frequently wears American Indian
jewelry.

The spokeswoman said the school will willingly give
Benya his diploma, but that he has not set up a meeting to do so. The
Benyas say they are considering legal action against the system.

I
think this is a pretty clear-cut case of anal white people
overreacting. Hopefully it’s not ethnically motivated, but Benya’s
mother did point out “There was a kid who took his pants off and threw
them up at graduation. He got his diploma.? My friend wore nothing at
all under his robes and graduated just fine, and I am from Maine!

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Author: Rob Goodspeed