Lydia Houck, age 9, of Windsor, Nova Scotia, was interested in attending a one-day summer camp offered by her local municipality. Two programs are offered: one involving hiking, fishing, and golf, and one involving a trip to a spa for manicures and pedicures. Lydia, saying that the day at the spa was “a bit ridiculous… [and] not really something that’s that interesting. You have to stay inside”, asked to go fishing with her brother, Jonah, age 7. But the municipal park warden replied that as the camps had been advertised as boy-only and girl-only (guess which is which!), she wouldn’t be allowed. The family has decided to take a trip that day instead, so that the siblings can hike and fish together. But first, Lydia, being endearing and well-spoken, got to be interviewed by the Globe and CTV about how all this just wasn’t fair.
My favourite part of the story, though, is that warden Richard Dauphinee dismissed her complaints by saying, “The place we’re going fishing is five minutes from her house, so if there were that big a concern, her mother or her parents could have taken her. I would have taken her myself but that wouldn’t be the thing to do; I’d probably get accused of something.”
You idiot, no-one was asking you to take this girl on an unsupervised fishing trip; she just wanted to play with her brother and other children her age. I’m sure I’d be feeling defensive and touchy too if the national media were calling to make fun of me for being a dork about gender relations or whatever else, but really, you don’t have to make it any worse for yourself.