Letters to the Editor

Letter to the editor: Banning grinding has sent teens to other events (June 2, 2010)

I was surprised and disappointed to see so few people interested in the safety of our Island teens, as evidenced by the lack of letters to the editor after the high school prom was canceled.

The “votes” definitely are in and the students of Vashon High School have spoken. The banning of the popular dance “grinding” is a complete and total failure! As I wrote last November in The Beachcomber, there has been no reduction in teens “grinding.” The only change is they have moved from the safety of chaperoned high school dances to private parties with questionable supervision and more risk. Even the high school principal, Susan Hanson, acknowledged in a letter to parents that the private parties associated with the prom cancelation could have resulted in “a very dangerous evening.”

So, not only has this well-intentioned but ill-conceived ban placed our children at risk, the seniors also lost the opportunity to attend their last prom and the entire student body has seen its revenue shrink as school dances lose money. So the students who would not attend dances because they found grinding offensive no longer have dances to attend.

Since the “cure” has been found to be more dangerous than the “disease,” it is time for the parents and administration to return to the table and admit that perhaps their plan was flawed.

In exchange for allowing grinding at high school dances, maybe the students can arrive at solutions that others will find less offensive.

I can only hope the adults will wake up before all dances are canceled and the proliferation of unsupervised parties leads to events that will scar our youth much more than anything that could occur at a chaperoned high school dance.

— Scott Harvey

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