Here’s some stuff I remember from high school in Oregon in the late ’90s/very early 2000s: It was super uncool to be gay. It was super uncool to be a feminist. “Weirdness” in the sense of like funny shirts or wearing pajamas on pajama day was cool but anything that called into question the fundamental elements of high school society, like suggesting that a school sponsored activity was racist, sexist or homophobic, was completely unacceptable. Socially, I got in more trouble for suggesting girls be allowed to participate in the Mr. Spartan Pageant than I did for anything else I ever did, including sobbing through Calculus for about 5 weeks straight.
Why am I telling you all this? Because today my brother posted this awesome video on Facebook, shot in 1996 called “Dirty Girls,” about some high schooler girls who refuse to conform and are therefore insulted and harassed by their classmates. It’s a good reminder that maybe the world isn’t actually getting worse, maybe it’s getting better (see: the teenager Carrie interviews in today’s “Ask a Teenager”). It’s a good reminder that we were all kind of jerks in the ’90s and that a lot of us didn’t have these wide open minds until late in college. Mostly, it’s just good: