Target: Taylor Allen and the student body of Richardson High School
Goal: Applaud students who called out bigoted “motivational” speaker for his sexist and discriminatory “advice.”
Christian motivational speaker Justin Lookadoo gets paid to travel from school to school performing his presentation of dating “advice” for young Americans; unfortunately, his message has a misogynistic foundation that permeates every bit of guidance. On his website, R. U. Dateable, anyone can find his “dateable girl” and “dateable boy rules,” which contain such offensive tips as “God made guys as leaders” and “Dateable girls know how to shut up,” besides equating women who bare some skin with pornographic stars and instructing “dateable guys” to “keep women covered up.” These rules are not only destructive to burgeoning personalities and individual sensibilities, but also reductive of sexuality and gender identity, trying to force gender back into the small box of the binary. These rules are particularly demeaning to young women, encouraging them to fit themselves into a mold they were not made in, and essentially implying a total lack of power and agency on their part.
Lookadoo probably did not expect the reaction he got recently when he visited the campus of Richardson High School in Richardson, Texas to give two of his preposterous talks to students there. According to Daily Kos, the school first canceled the lectures and later rescheduled them, due to outrage on the part of students and parents before the event ever took place. When Lookadoo finally presented his ridiculous advice, Richardson students rebelled against the message using the hashtag #lookadouche, which exploded in popularity within hours. Taylor Allen, who attended the first lecture, penned a brilliant response to the event, calling out Lookadoo for his misogyny and anti-LGBT*Q sentiments and affiliations. Her response, celebrating her peers’ “creative, if a touch crude, response to his sexism,” was published on the website of the Texas Freedom Network and reprinted with permission by Daily Kos.
By signing this petition, you are applauding the actions of Taylor Allen and her fellow students at Richardson High, who rejected Lookadoo as a preacher of sexism and heteronormativity. You are encouraging them and students like them to continue thinking critically and protesting against biased and bigoted speakers and ideas. You are refusing to tolerate the exposure of young people to such discriminatory “lectures.”
Dear Taylor Allen and Richardson High School students,
I am refreshed and relieved to see the efforts of students like you, who recognize and refuse to tolerate bigotry and discrimination, despite being presented sexist information as fact. Bigots like Justin Lookadoo can no longer be welcomed in American schools, and your actions reaffirm the rights of students to realize their own gender identities and personalities, of which Mr. Lookadoo’s “advice” is alarmingly reductive.
I commend you for your poise and directness in addressing Mr. Lookadoo’s blatant sexism and adherence to the outdated gender binary. I applaud your actions in bringing his bigotry to light for the nation to witness and protest. I hope that you and other students will continue to think critically and be proactive in calling attention to discrimination, no matter where it occurs.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: New York Magazine