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NEWS: Maryland Boy Wearing Bolo Tie Denied Diploma

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posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 11:58 AM
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Thomas Benya wanted to pay tribute to his Native American Heritage so he decided he would wear a braided bolo tie under his graduation gown as a subtle tribute to his heritage, there was only one slight problem. School officials said it did not conform to the schools graduation dress code, so they refused to give him his diploma as a form of punishment.
 



www.chron.com

Thomas Benya wore a braided bolo tie under his purple graduation gown this week as a subtle tribute to his Native American heritage.

Administrators at his Charles County, Md., school decided the string tie was too skinny. They denied him his diploma, at least temporarily, as punishment.

The bolo, common in contemporary American Indian culture, is not considered a tie by his public school in Pomfret. If Benya wants the diploma, he will have to schedule a conference with the administrators.

What his parents say they want is an apology from Maurice J. McDonough High School for embarrassing their son and failing to respect the Cherokee background of his father's ancestors.



Please visit the link provided for the complete story.




This is beyond belief that a school could be so rude as to withhold a student’s diploma because they did not like the style of tie. There is absolutely nothing offensive with the tie, therefore it would not have disrupted the school ceremony. Personally I think he deserves a public apology.

I am willing to bet that schools in Texas would not find the tie offensive, they are worn there all the time. What would the school have done had the boy been unable to buy a tie? Could they deny him his diploma for not wearing one? I doubt it since courts have ruled in other cases where blue jeans could be worn when formal dress was too expensive for the parents.


Related News Links:
seattletimes.nwsource.com
www.chicagotribune.com
www.whotv.com







[edit on 6/11/2005 by shots]




posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 01:00 PM
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Here in New Mexico, a bolo tie, a polo shirt and a jacket are considered dressy. Add starched and pressed jeans and a pair of polished cowboy boots and you're talking formal attire. I was unaware of the Indian background of the bolo tie, but still, regardless of his ethnicity, culture, or whatever, there are plenty of places to wear a bolo tie and he should have followed the dress code. My guess is that he is being punished for being an obstinate punk, not for wearing the tie.



posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 01:12 PM
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School officials said it did not conform to the schools graduation dress code,

Well if the dress code for graduation was announced and made known to the soon to be grads then YES the boy is at fault. He knew better.

But if the dress code was not announced then the school is at fault and someone should be fired..IMO



Administrators at his Charles County, Md

I am from one county over from this place....people there are used to wearing BOLO ties and cowboy boots....hell probably 25% of the people have are part Natice American....so I doubt this was a discremination issue.

He is probably some punk with a past and this little stunt was one stunt too many.

Like I said...dress codes are for a reason. And 99% of the time Slacks and a tie are announced for the gards to wear prior to the day of graduation.

[edit on 11/6/2005 by SportyMB]



posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 07:29 PM
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Well if the dress code for graduation was announced and made known to the soon to be grads then YES the boy is at fault. He knew better.


I disagree the school is clearly at fault. If that kind of tie is allowed in Texas, why not Maryland? Why should the dress code there be any different there?



posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 07:32 PM
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The school sets the standard, not the state or, apparently, every individual. If this kid wanted to screw up his high school graduation over a damn bolo tie, I say he deserves what he gets.



posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 07:33 PM
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I disagree the school is clearly at fault. If that kind of tie is allowed in Texas, why not Maryland? Why should the dress code there be any different there?


Well to start with you are talking about 2 different cultures. Aren't all states allowed to determine their own educational policy? I would think this would be a state matter.



posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 07:41 PM
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Why should the dress code there be any different there?

I cant believe someone ask this question.....


Dress codes vary from school to school and sometimes from district to district. Because of the area. In some places students cannot wear bandanas for obvious reasons...in others they can. In my Highschool that I graduated from wich is 30 minutes away from the one in the artcile we were not allowed to wear baggy coats because guns can be hidden in them, but 30 minutes away at this HS is just the opposite. It's like that around the DC area.



posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 07:49 PM
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GradyPhilpott

Expert: 131
My guess is that he is being punished for being an obstinate punk, not for wearing the tie.


Being a little judgemental there Grady.

I would like to know why the school allowed a female to wear long pants and a headscarf for religious reasons. Why was she not disciplinedl when the proper attire was well known. If I hold an event for a large number of people and I state that attendance is based on wearing exactly what I define the dress code to be, then I would expect that everyone who wishes to attend will dress accordingly. The fact that they removed the boy and not the girl appears to be an act of reverse discrimination by allowing her to express her religious "beliefs" though her attire.

Remember: Religion is a man-made belief system, not a divinely ordained God or Demi-god created system... if it were, then the Gods would constantly be on our cases about all the various inpretations of their belief systems, and certain people that we all know would have already eaten a lightning bolt or three.



posted on Jun, 11 2005 @ 08:34 PM
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Why should the dress code there be any different there?




I cant believe someone ask this question.....

Dress codes vary from school to school and sometimes from district to district. Because of the area. In some places students cannot wear bandanas for obvious reasons...in others they can. In my Highschool that I graduated from wich is 30 minutes away from the one in the artcile we were not allowed to wear baggy coats because guns can be hidden in them, but 30 minutes away at this HS is just the opposite. It's like that around the DC area.


Why is it so hard to understand why one would ask that question? Seems to me that the East Coast in general has an attitude problem if you ask me.

A tie is a tie the style should have nothing to do with it as long as it is not offensive. What if the individual prefered bow ties, should he be forced to wear a neck tie just to appease a few snoobs? personally I do not think so.

In the fifties we wore ties that were called string ties not the same variety but never the less they were very narrow and no one had a problem when I wore mine at graduation, yet for some odd reason a few members of this odd school board seem to have forgotten they were acceptable years ago, as they are right now in the West.



[edit on 6/11/2005 by shots]



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 01:41 AM
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I dont see the problem with him wearing it, and I agree that the school should have to make a public apologie.


However, if he was known for breaking rules, and this was indeed a stunt, no one should apologise, they should just give him his diploma, and leave it at that.



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 01:52 AM
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Seems to me like it would be hard to be judgemental about the situation when you do not have any of the real facts behind the incident.

Seems to me that a tie is a tie is a tie. The origin of the tie was for sanitation. It was there so men could catch the food before it ruined their shirts, catch hockers, etc. etc. so... May this kid is a slob and his shirts were offensive?

The kid was graduating for pity sake. Way to go school district.



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 01:54 AM
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I thought if you completed high school, they had to give you your diploma. So what if he was denied the pomp and circumstance of a ceremony, he still gets his diploma. You attend school for a diploma, not a graduation ceremony.

[edit on 6-12-2005 by groingrinder]



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 09:18 AM
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If he did well enough to graduate and pass why does it matter what he dresses like? I can't care less how someone looks as long as they can do their job. It's nothing more then another form of eliteism and a way to seperate people even more - like we need that?



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 10:02 AM
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Sounds more like a case of an overzealous fashion police


The bolo, common in contemporary American Indian culture, is not considered a tie by his public school in Pomfret.



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 10:13 AM
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Well according to what the school board had sent out in March:



In March, Benya's high school sent a letter to parents and seniors explaining that "adherence to the dress code is mandatory," with the word mandatory in bold and underlined. For girls: white dresses or skirts with white blouses. For boys: dark dress pants with white dress shirts and ties.

A bolo tie is not proscribed. Since a Bolo Tie is a tie, then the problem lies with the way the school interpets it's own standards. Since by the school's guidelines, the student was in compliance, I would have to agree with HowardRoark and this is a case of overzealous fashion police.
In this case the school is definately in the wrong.



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 10:54 AM
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Originally posted by kenshiro2012
Well according to what the school board had sent out in March:



In March, Benya's high school sent a letter to parents and seniors explaining that "adherence to the dress code is mandatory," with the word mandatory in bold and underlined. For girls: white dresses or skirts with white blouses. For boys: dark dress pants with white dress shirts and ties.



Good catch Kenshiro. I missed the exact wording and have to agree with you, since it does not state Neck Tiethey have opened the school to a nice lawsuit which no doubt will end with a nice cash settlement



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 11:07 AM
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This is outrageous. Bolo, bow, or windsor, a tie is a tie - they are all just as dressy. This is a typical example of a school official making a stupid decision and the school having to defend it.

Of course, the school HAS to defend it because if they don't support every stupid little ridiculous decision made by the most minute and ineffective administrator, then they lose some measure of discipline and everything goes to hell.

Grady, I think your assumption that this young man was some kind of punk kid is way out of line and I lost some respect for you when you made that declaration.

Zip



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 05:03 PM
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.
Obviously the actual meaning of a diploma carries less significance to these adminstrators than some, I guess symbolic, dress code. The diploma should represent [as a symbol] a certain minimal skill set that has been learned.

They appear to have gotten lost in some slippery symbol dream world, where the actual meaning of a diploma has changed from math and reading literacy to an ability to conform to a ridgid code of behavior.

Generally in competition fluid adaptability wins out over ridgid formality.
These may be well meaning academicians, but they better stay in their academy, they obviously aren't flexible enough for the real world.

Bill Gates, a college dropout, is the richest man in the world [for now] and millions of others who have degrees aren't. [Not that that is the only worthwhile parameter of evaluation]
The Latin Americans who break the law crossing the border are winning the economic-culture battle, while brittle anglo traditions are afraid to use a little violence to stop it.

The US was taken/usurped from the American Indians, and now we are afraid to breathe a little and allow a string tie instead of a broad-cloth tie?

Makes me think of the Revolutionary war,
The red coats lined up in rigid formation,
The Pioneers used guerilla tactics and shot them from behind trees.
I think we all know how that turned out.

America is crisp brittle toast.

*Crunch* *Crunch*
.



posted on Jun, 12 2005 @ 05:12 PM
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Hmm, when I graduated high school way back in 1979 you were lucky if have the grads had clothes on under their gowns. It is graduation day, let the kids wear what they want, its their day after all. I think the school made too much of an issue out of the whole thing and the news story has only made them look pretty silly in the end.







 
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