+
A high school principal created a dress code for parents. It's being called racist and sexist.

Parents whose children attend James Madison High School were taken aback when they received a letter from Principal Carlotta Outley Brown outlining a strict dress code they needed to adhere to while on school grounds.

“We are preparing your child for a prosperous future,” Brown wrote. “We want them to know what is appropriate and what is not appropriate for any setting they may be in.”

The list of banned items was pretty extensive. It included satin caps, bonnets, shower caps, hair rollers, pajamas or any pajama-looking attire, jeans “torn from your buttocks to all the way down showing lots of skin,” leggings “showing your bottom and where your body is not covered from the front or back,” very low cut or revealing tops, sagging pants, shorts or jeans, Daisy Dukes, low rider shorts, undershirts on men and dresses that are “up to your behind.”


According to reports, the letter was provoked after a mother was kicked off the school campus by an administrator for her ensemble.

Joselyn Lewis was unable to register her daughter for school, after showing up on campus wearing a Marilyn Monroe t-shirt dress and headscarf — an item commonly worn by black women to protect their hair.

“[Principal Brown] went on to say that she still couldn’t let me on the premises because I was not in dress code and I still didn’t understand what that meant,” Lewis told Click 2 Houston. “She said that my headscarf was out of dress code and my dress was too short.”

Lewis said she was in the headscarf because she was in the process of getting her hair done, but pointed out that there are other reasons people might wear them.

“I’m not saying that it’s a part of my religion, but it could have been, but I just wanted to have it up. Who are you to say that I can’t wear my hair up? In a scarf? Who are you to tell me how to dress?” she continued.

Many people, including Zeph Capo, president of the Houston Federation of Teachers, can understand why racy clothing should be banned from schools. However, he finds this particular policy “a little classist” in nature.

"Having body parts exposed is one thing. Turning someone away because their hair's in rollers ... is a little ridiculous," he told CNN. "This is an issue of a principal issuing a dictatorial edict rather than having substantive conversation."

Social media, as well as mass media, has been on fire debating the issue. Some claim that imposing these specific dress code violations is racist (note that the principal herself is black) while others deem it sexist, as most of the dress code restrictions are targeted at women. Several also point out that the school should be focusing on education rather than policing parents on dress code.

One woman, a PhD, noted that white women are rarely banned for wearing tight yoga pants to pick-up and drop-off.

This isn’t the first time a dress code has been deemed racist or sexist in nature.

Back in 2017, Chicago restaurant and bar, Bottled Blonde, came under fire for issuing a dress code policy that many felt targeted black people. “No excessively Baggie [sic], Sagging, Ripped, Dirty, Frayed, Overly Flashy, or Bright clothing,” “No plain white tees, long tees, denim, flannel (not even around one’s waist)” “No gang attire...no camouflage,” and “shorts must be no longer than one inch past your knees,” were just a few of the items that ignited controversy.

And in 2016, three girls at a North Carolina private school revolted against a dress code requiring them to wear skirts to school or risk punishment. After creating and circulating a petition, the rules were overturned when a judge found the dress code unconstitutional.

“The skirts requirement causes the girls to suffer a burden the boys do not, simply because they are female,” wrote US District Judge Malcolm Harris on March 28 in response to the 2016 ACLU lawsuit against the Charter Day School in Leland.

Thankfully, there’s organization working to create a model school dress code that’s meant to be entirely inclusive.

In February 2016, Oregon NOW (National Organization of Women) created a dress code that wouldn’t marginalize or oppress any group based on gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, household income, gender identity or cultural observance.

The basic principle is that certain body parts should be covered — genitals, buttocks and nipples — but that cleavage is okay. Most clothing is allowed, however items banned include anything with words or images promoting violence, drugs and alcohol, hate speech, profanity or pornography, or anything promoting a hostile environment. Visible underwear, bathing suits and helmets that obscure the face are also prohibited.

“Oregon NOW created this Model Dress Code to help school districts update and improve their student dress code policies and enforcement processes,” policymakers explained.

“Student dress codes should support equitable educational access and should not reinforce gender stereotypes. Student dress codes and administrative enforcement should not reinforce or increase marginalization or oppression of any group based on race, gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, household income, gender identity or cultural observance.”

Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
Keep ReadingShow less
All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

True

Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

via Dion Merrick / Facebook

This article originally appeared on 02.09.21


At 1:30 am on Monday morning an AMBER Alert went out in southern Louisiana about a missing 10-year-old girl from New Iberia. It was believed she had been kidnapped and driven away in a 2012 silver Nissan Altima.

A few hours later at 7 am, Dion Merrick and Brandon Antoine, sanitation workers for Pelican Waste, were on their daily route when they noticed a vehicle that fit the description in the alert.

Keep ReadingShow less
Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

Keep ReadingShow less