What in the high school hell is up with these racist promposals?
April 15, 2016 at 6:03 am
Between the months of April through June, the influx of photos related to prom season are not rare to find.
glad to be going to prom with him 💚 pic.twitter.com/VbnKt62hDK
— kae (@xkaaaelyn) April 14, 2016
From the moment a teen actually finds a date to the second they enter the dance, social media grants us an invite to the biggest social event of every high school student’s life (whether we want to be there or not). But, times are definitely changing and the lengths teenagers will go to to make prom season extraordinary is off the charts.
R.I.P. to the American Prom. Y’all done let these born in 1998 kids destroy it, yo. pic.twitter.com/QI7lqbNdC1
— DJ R-Tistic (@dj_RTistic) April 15, 2016
Among the kids who use the most ornate, theatrical, and thoughtful ways to ask their fellow classmates to prom, there are a few who have chosen to employ racist epithets and offensive cultural stereotypes. As there appears to be an increase in this deplorable lack of sensitivity and ignorant sense of judgment, it begs the need to ask a few necessary questions about the state of today’s promposals.
Why are teenagers agreeing to accompany their racist peers? Is the struggle for companionship that real out there?
— Son of Baldwin (@SonofBaldwin) April 14, 2016
Where are the parents of the children receiving these invitations? Are they okay with their child taking photos with a peer who doesn’t respect them? How do they feel about the fact that their child said “yes”? Where are the adults who condoned the insensitive invitation created by their child? How would they feel if the tables were turned?
Stop racist prom proposals 2kforever ✌🏽️ pic.twitter.com/X5fRZzFZUh
— Queen Nzinga (@QueenNzinga13) April 3, 2016
With some of these promposals taking place on school grounds, why is there no disciplinary action for students who incite and carry out these types of stereotypical and hateful messages? Can we whip out a code of conduct real quick?
I’m blind. There is no fucking way. pic.twitter.com/qcWBMYcliN
— fivehead (@blackheaux) April 3, 2016
What’s really telling about many of these situations are the responses.
The students on the receiving end of the microaggressions are flattered.
And, their classmates are impressed.
Where is the shame?
The idea that “kids will be kids” or “they don’t know any better” and my personal favorite, “they don’t even know what that stuff means and we should stop being so sensitive” won’t cut it. To assume that argument is not only ill-informed, but weak. For these teenagers to even pull together the materials and do the necessary labor to carry out the promposal itself, the thought behind it had a strong foundation. Whether it was implanted from the ideas of familial sentiments or the constant racial climate that we still live in today, the fact that they made a choice to impose a message to individuals that fit the description of a particular stereotype, goes to show that not only did they know what they were doing, but they thought it was funny and acceptable to do it. The fact that the potential dates in question also obliged in these hateful acts, and even in some cases defended the actions of their prom dates, proves that they anticipated something could be taken the wrong way.
These cases of insensitivity are so strong that no one should be defending any of these actions at all.
If these promposals are just a reflection of this era in which people will do the most for a viral video or picture, we have to be concerned about why engaging in this behavior is the option these children are choosing. Prom only lasts a few hours, but the memories last a lifetime. In a world where tweets never fade and photos are always susceptible to screenshots, one day these kids may be concerned about how they are remembered. In the future when these soon to be young adults look back upon these decisions they’ve made, they may wish they took advantage of the knowledge and information they have had access to since they were born. Maybe if they did, they’d have been more keen to how unforgiving the Internet can be.