Thursday, January 17, 2008

I Don't Have A Catchy Title For This

I attempted to think of one and I don't know if it's the early hour or if the disgusting nature of this story is getting to me.

Juashaunna Kelly, a senior at the District of Columbia's Theodore Roosevelt High School, has the fastest mile and 2-mile times of any girl runner in the DC Metro area. She custom made her own unitard type contraption so that she could keep the practices of her Muslim faith. For three years she has worn this outfit, that bears no logos, and for three years there has been no problem.

That however apparently has changed now that she's the top runner in the area. director Tom Rogers said Kelly's uniform violated rules of the National Federation of State High School Associations, which sanctioned the event. Uniforms are required to be "a single-solid color and unadorned, except for a single school name or insignia no more than 2 1/4 inches," he said.

Rogers said that he knew Kelly was wearing the uniform for religious reasons and that he offered her several options to conform to the rules while still respecting her faith, including placing a plain T-shirt over her unitard and then wearing her team uniform over it.

Kelly's mother, Sarah, and Roosevelt Coach Tony Bowden disputed that account. They said officials made several demands of her daughter before Rogers made his decision.

"First, they said she had to take her hood off," Sarah Kelly said. "Then, they said she can't have anything with logos displayed. Then, they said she had to turn it inside out. When I told them that there weren't any logos on it, they said she had to put a plain white T-shirt on over it."
A few thoughts on this, and I'm hope I'm wrong but something tells me I'm not. First the guy is lying his ass off about single color track uniforms, when the team uniform isn't even single colored. This to me sounds more like discrimination and I hope to hell Ms Kelly's family fights this, be it with whoever is above Mr. Rogers or through the courts.

I fear that this has more to do with prejudice and hatred then it does with alleged rules that were apparently not a problem until she won. Mr. Rogers or another party was fine to keep quiet, that is until one of those big bad Muslims won a race. I'm sorry folks, but this is absolutely disgusting to me. We want folks to integrate into our society and this young lady has. She has competed and participated in an American event, kept her faith, and should be commended on doing so, not condemned.

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