For Elle Wilson and her Mount Si High School student ‘Gender Equality’ group, the positive community response to their simple message, ‘Be Above the Madness,’ has been a little bit more than expected.
The group pushed back against a five-year tradition of Mount Si boys throwing girls into basketball tournament brackets and voting on their looks – i.e. ‘May Madness.’ After five years, they said enough is enough – and it seems many Snoqualmie Valley community members agree, as well others outside the Valley.
One day after the story about Elle Wilson and the Mount Si High School Gender Equality Group was published, Elle and group’s fight was featured three local TV news broadcasts: King 5 News, KIRO News and Q13 Fox News.
According to King 5, the organizers of the contest didn’t want to speak on camera, but did state they believe the attention to May Madness is being blown out of proportion.
The attention, though, seems to be as much focused on Elle’s equality group’s positive pushback against the contest, as it is ‘May Madness’ itself.
According to group members, in past years some girls who opposed and spoke out against the contest were then thrown into it, which caused many girls to keep quiet and accept it.
This year, a year when May Madness organizers allegedly pitted two of three freshman triplet sisters against each other in a bracket, that changed.
Elle Wilson said it’s time to stop saying ‘boys will be boys’ and acknowledge the hurt and disruption the contest causes.
Where Can We get a T-shirt?
After receiving multiple requests for the catchy slogan t-shirts, as well as inquiries about how to donate to help the group print more protest shirts, the group launched a website, www.beabovethemadness.com. The website includes a link to an online donation fundraiser page.
They are also in the process of having the homemade t-shirts that resonated with many professionally designed and screened, which should be ready early next week.
The group hopes to hand out more shirts to classmates, with the hope that they will join the May Madness protest that launched this week… and maybe sell a few around the Snoqualmie Valley and elsewhere to help fund future work of the Gender Equality group.
As for the May Madness private Twitter page? It’s still there, even after a request from the principal to remove it. But it has lost about 20 followers in two days.