Monday, June 13, 2011

Rules . . .

I am a very rule oriented person. I think it is partially related to my OCD, and partially because my dad was a stickler for rules. I was raised to respect rules and follow them always. I was the kid that was no fun. I was the kid who said, "You aren't supposed to be doing that!"

We have a situation in our town that has got some people up in arms. A local high school graduate finished school early and went into the Marines. She recently finished boot camp and came back for graduation. The school district's policy is that all students must wear a cap and gown to take part in their graduation ceremony. She wanted to wear her dress blues. They said no. She decided to wear her dress blues and sit in the stands.

Military protocol says that her dress blues are fit for this type of ceremony. The district has rules.

I think the rule is that you wear a cap and gown to graduation. If you want to participate, you wear the cap and gown. If we let her wear dress blues everyone would want to wear something different. I agree that what she is doing is honorable. I don't think that a high school rule is more important than military protocol, I just think that rules of the event she is partaking in should be followed.

I don't mean to sound argumentative at all, my husband is a veteran and I am proud of his service, but I guess that my question is that if it is a rule, why should it be allowed to be broken? I get that she was proud, I'm sure her school was proud of her. I know her fellow students were proud of her, but why does that entitle her to any different treatment. It is not that I am against her or her wearing her uniform, I am just saying a rule is a rule. If they begin to add exceptions, then it just snowballs.

This same situation happened in Pennsylvania last week.
Congressman Jason Altmire says that the Marines have told Starr not to wear her uniform. Marine higher-ups told Starr to follow orders and wear the cap and gown, enjoy herself and prepare to serve her country. The school said Tuesday that she could wear the uniform and she chose to wear the cap and gown.

What do you think?


Anonymous said...

There is an appropriate military uniform for any occasion, no matter how formal. I think the school is wrong. I also can't imagine what the reason is for not allowing military uniforms. I guess I'm not a rules person. I'm a person who prefers to evaluate things case-by-case, not just fall back on rules. Also, I don't think allowing a military uniform at graduation means that "anything" will be allowed. Military service is in a class by itself -- it's not like wearing your Burger King uniform or your favorite college T-shirt.

Sheri said...

Thanks for sharing. Differing opinions are always welcome.

One of the other school districts in town does allow military uniforms at graduation in place of the cap and gown.

Sue in Tenn said...

The cap and gown is the "uniform" of a person who has completed their education and is receiving a diploma. I really don't see the need to wear a different uniform except perhaps to call attention to oneself. So, I kind of question the motive here. Yes, be proud, but you got to wear your military uniform when you graduated from basic training and there will be many more opportunities. This is high school graduation, cap and gown is the dress protocol so just deal with it.

Miz Kizzle said...

Rules are terribly important in a conformist society. If we didn't have a concise set of rules to follow we'd all have to resort to common sense.