Yes, I Watch Too Much DS9
But, hey, it's in reruns, so Iz and I were watching it this morning. This time it was the episode where Quark finds out his mom is doing the whumpa-whumpa with Grand Nagus Zek (Iz: "Hey, it's Vizzini!"). It was also the one where my least favorite characters, Rom and Leeta, get all cross-culturally huffy over prenuptial arrangements, and thereby exemplify the worst kind of ST righteous anthropocentricism. Barf.
I am glad Iz was there, so we could talk about how messed up it is that everyone was cheering at Rom's being so open-minded and non-Ferengi about the match, whereas when Rom dared to bring up some Ferengi concepts about marriage to the Bajoran (i.e., human proxy) Leeta, he was almost thrown out of an airlock.
The Ferengi traditions were blatantly sexist, from Leeta's and a human non-Muslim's standpoint. However, there were zero discussions of how culturally outrageous Rom's concessions were. And, of course, in the end, he made a compromise that respected the letter of the Ferengi code but reamed out its spirit entirely, making all the humans & Bajorans so proud of him. How loathsome.
There is a big rollicking discussion going on the Deadwood Moms Club board lately, about the same topics: prejudice and respect. It's gotten passionately convoluted yet thoughtful, especially since both Badger and Ep have joined the debate. I usually sit on the sidelines and make noises of outrage, but this time I had to chime in in defense of Iz's school, Esperanza, which the original volley maligned as a gang-filled wasteland.
What bothered me more than anything was that the writer of the original email didn't even bother to mask the prejudices she was voicing in a polite query. She couldn't write, "I have heard that Esperanza's dress code forbids red because they don't want to encourage gang activity--is this true?" Oh no.
Instead, we get "My friend heard that the Esperanza dress code is because of gangs and now Esperanza is DEFINITELY off her list." How fucking rude is that, to send such a statement to a group of 200+ Deadwood parents without even considering that some of their kids might attend Esperanza?
Here was my response:
Holy S***! I'd better pull my daughter out of Esperanza right away!
Right. The dress code has more to do with equality than anything else--the student body comes from a very wide range of economic backgrounds, and the staff doesn't want clothing to interfere with the social dynamics--as much as this is possible, anyhow.
Having said that, the school does go up to grade 8, and the staff does prohibit the wearing of the gang color red. However, if you knew the caliber of the students and extremely involved families at Esperanza, you would laugh at this sort of overprotectiveness.
Esperanza is a fantastic school. My first-grade daughter has been there since August, and is already fluent and literate in Spanish. The teachers and families are the most involved I've ever met. I consider my daughter fortunate to have the opportunity to achieve biliteracy in such a nurturing environment.
With tongue firmly in cheek but still annoyed by this type of knee-jerk ignorance re: Deadwood schools,
I am not trying to wrest control of the PC scepter by any means, as I certainly say stupid, offensive shit all the time. But I hope that I'm considerate when broadcasting my opinion--in a non-anonymous fashion, anyhow. Especially since everyone in the moms club has access to the other members' addresses.