I meant to post this link last week, but the horrifying detonation of my digestive tract on Wednesday kind of distracted me. My best friend Kat, who teaches first grade, sent this story to me: Museum Field Trip Deemed Too Revealing
The basic story seems to be that a teacher took her class on a field trip to the Art Museum, which is a place that’s been approved by the school for kids to go. Kids saw (OH GOD NO) some art that involved nudes at some point along the tour. Teacher was subsequently fired.
I’d like to paint this as a head-shaking, “only in Texas” thing, but I can quite easily imagine this sort of situation cropping up in Colorado Springs or any other deeply conservative1 community. What freaked Kat out the most is that the teacher took the kids to an approved location, and still ended up on the block for it. What’s freaking me out the most is that apparently nudity in art is so evil and offensive to someone that they went gunning for the teacher’s job.
I understand not wanting children to be exposed to pornography, really I do. How some people can conflate pornography with simple nudity is, I think, more revealing of those doing the conflating than they’d really like. I also admit that I’m quite puzzled as to how children can spend their infancy presumably being exposed to boobies while being fed, and to the reality of being naked under their clothes throughout their childhood2, but a nude statue at an art museum is apparently going to warp their young minds beyond recognition. Maybe the statues in question were holding signs that said things like, “Santa Claus isn’t real,” “The Tooth Fairy doesn’t exist,” and “Metallica 4ever.”
1 – Here, “deeply conservative” read as “completely fucking insane.”
2 – I took showers with my parents when I was a really little kid, so I even knew what naked grownups looked like. Though I suppose depending on your feelings about me as a person, that could work as an argument in either direction.