Brittany Molina, a student at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah found herself the recipient of some unexpected attention Valentine’s day. She was studying in the school library when another student tapped her on the shoulder and passed her a note.
At first she thought it was a love note, but upon unfolding the sheet, she was instead confronted with a stern lecture about her attire:
“You may want to consider that what you’re wearing has a negative effect on men (and women) around you. Many people come to this university because they feel safe, morally as well as physically, here. They expect others to abide by the Honor Code that we all agreed on. Please consider your commitment to the Honor Code (which you agreed to) when dressing each day. Thank you.”
BYU was founded by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and all students must agree to follow the school’s Honor Code. Here’s what the Honor Code has to say about women’s clothing:
Clothing is inappropriate when it is sleeveless, strapless, backless, or revealing; has slits above the knee; or is form fitting. Dresses, skirts, and shorts must be knee-length or longer. Hairstyles should be clean and neat, avoiding extremes in styles or colors.
Molina posted the note and photo to Twitter, and it quickly went viral. The picture above shows the note and the outfit Molina was wearing at the time – there is, apparently, some debate about whether a dress cut above the knees is appropriate when coupled with leggings, at least at a Mormon university. Still, the overwhelming reaction to Molina’s tweets on the encounter have been supportive. It seems that the anonymous note-giver is probably the only one offended by the outfit.
Personally, I can’t think of any real reason why anyone would find the outfit problematic. Molina’s almost completely covered, and her neckline doesn’t actually reveal anything. The real issue here seems to be that a certain student caught a glimpse of an attractive girl, and couldn’t deal with the “temptation” in a mature, healthy manner. This is just another form of shaming women for their sexuality – even when Molina wasn’t doing anything overtly sexual, simply doing her schoolwork, the fact that she was dressed in a flattering outfit was apparently too much to handle.
At least Molina is maintaining a sense of humor about it. On Twitter, she quipped: “I’ll remember to dress in jeans, a sweatshirt and tennis shoes tomorrow. That way I don’t make people feel uncomfortable.”
Photo Credit: Brittany Molina