Middle school is a tough age for anyone, but especially girls. It’s typically the age when their bodies go through all sorts of changes, including getting their period.
It might be a bit of a personal matter, but menstrual cycles happen to every female. So why try to hide it?
One male principal at a middle school decided that there was no reason to provide tampons in school bathrooms, even after getting requests for them. The reason? He felt as though students would “abuse the privilege.” Whatever that means…
Even seventh graders knew this didn’t make any sense and that there was something to be done here. And so they decide to take a stand and take matters into their own hands. So what did they do? They took to baking.
A band of seventh graders baked up dozens of “tampon cookies” in an effort to protest the lack of tampons provided to them.
President of the non profit NARAL Pro Choice America Ilyse Hogue shared a photo of the cookies, explaining how they came to be (below).
My friend’s 7th grader goes to a school where the kids organized for free tampons in the bathroom. The male principle said no because they would “abuse the privilege.” The kids decided to stage a cookie protest. Behold the tampon cookies! pic.twitter.com/jz2KtbhOhS
— ilyse hogue (@ilyseh) October 30, 2019
The post received more than 50,000 likes and almost 10,000 retweets. The cookies are brilliant: Sugar cookies sandwiched with red frosting to mimic blood, with the tops dipped in white frosting to represent the cotton of the tampon. They even added an edible string! The realism is impeccable.
The three anonymous girls created their own website, deemed the “Revolutionary Girls’ Baking Society” to explain the purpose behind their movement. “We believe no woman or girl should be shamed by her period,” the girls write. “She should feel confident and not secretive. It should just be the norm. Because it is.”
Do these girls know what they’re talking about or what? “We are Every Girl in Every Town across the US and the world who is finding her way in a society that doesn’t want to hear us talk about our bodies and something that is perfectly healthy and perfectly normal,” they said.
So did their protest work? It absolutely did! “Our principal and the school board are now working to make sure every girl in our town will have the products they need readily available so no girl misses a day of school,” the girls explained on their website. “We are very grateful that the school has taken our action seriously and is making a change. Feminine hygiene is not a luxury or a privilege, and not having tampons and pads is a barrier to every girl’s education.”
But the girls want to take it even farther. They encourage anyone interested to check out sites like Period.org or other organizations with the goal to gain equal access to period education for everyone. “Ours is a story of standing up with love and courage for our basic rights,” they said. “Stand with us and work locally, nationally, and internationally to support the health and rights of all people.”
How amazing is this movement—and those cookies? Do you know anyone who’s participated in a protest like this one?