For the past few years, South High’s student council has tried to throw a Spring Fling dance. Other years, the dance has failed for a number of logistical reasons, but this year it did not work because of the inappropriate dancing, or grinding, that happened at this year’s Sweetheart’s dance.
“We’ve tried for a couple years but it’s never really worked. This is the first year we have planned it,” said junior and Student Council member Maisie Taylor, “it didn’t happen this year because parents and chaperones didn’t approve of the dancing.”
Inappropriate dancing is something that many South High students have either seen or participated in. Several students asserted that they are not completely against inappropriate dancing, but that there is a line between what can be done in public and what should be done in private.
“It’s crossing a line if you have to find a balance or support because you are bending over too much, if you are at a ninety degree angle,” said sophomore Selena Moreno, “I think it’s just kind of inappropriate and disrespectful to yourself because there are people around you and you’re doing something gross. It’s not cute. It just looks like you’re having sex or some sort of sexual action, it’s a private thing to do.”
Junior Veronica Jones-Carr defined inappropriate dancing as “if they didn’t have their clothes on it would look like they’re having sex.”
Although several students have a similar idea of what’s crossing the line, we still see students crossing that line at each dance. Sophomore Kim Roofe said why she participates is “because it’s a way to express yourself; I love inappropriate dancing.”
“It’s boring if you’re not doing it. If you are going to a dance you dress for what you’re going to do. At school dances you wear a short dress because it fits the kind of dancing you do,” said sophomore Izzy Carlson, “I know how my parents look at me, I’m thinking that as long as you’re safe then it’s not dangerous.”
“I can’t think of a single person who has never danced that way. It’s the way our generation has been raised, why people don’t like it is because it was not part of their childhood,” said head of the Student Council Dance Committee and junior Lena Pelini, “I don’t think it’s inappropriate because that’s the way our generation dances and that’s what’s in the media, but I guess [parents] don’t like the amount of physical contact.”
These students are perpetuating the idea that times have changed, that this generation is pushing the limits on appropriate just like the last generation and the next generation will.
“Times have changed and parents are still appalled and that it happens,” said Sharon White, a chaperone at Sweetheart’s and an employee at South High School.
Parents are a very important part of why Spring Fling is not happening. Junior and Student Council member Sam Holt said, “a surprise visitor parent at Sweetheart’s was appalled by the dancing that occurred, and therefore when we proposed spring fling it was shot down.”
A South High parent who was at the dance and who wished to remain anonymous, complained saying that she thought the dancing was inappropriate to the point that she would not refer to it as dancing: “There was no dancing, it was vulgar movements on the dance floor that should not be happening.”
Although she thinks that it was incredibly inappropriate, she does not necessarily want to prevent Spring Fling from happening. “I don’t think another dance should be canceled. I think it should be addressed in an assembly where expectations should be clearly defined,” she stated.
Students are a bit at a loss on how to stop inappropriate dancing from happening. “There isn’t anything we could do to stop it,” said Pelini, “I think Spring Fling would have been a good idea because there is nothing besides Sweetheart’s for underclassmen and because this is the time where everyone is becoming unmotivated. It would have been helpful for something to be there for them to look forward to.”
Although Spring Fling was canceled, Student Council members are working on a replacement for a spring get-together that will keep people motivated. So far they are thinking about a movie night on the football field. “We’re trying to have another event,” Taylor said, “we’re planning a movie night, something we could do to get the school together, another way to raise money and have fun.”