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An 11-year-old girl—oldest on her Nebraska Blue Jays cheerleading squad—has been kicked off of the elementary school’s junior cheer squad after refusing to “shake her booty”. The pre-teen chose to wait until game time to take a "stand" and refuse cheer performance, the media exposure not bothering Faylene Frampton or her parents.
The young Nebraska pre-teen says that while the cheer gyrations may please the football game crowd, she doesn’t believe young girls should be moving their bodies like that. The first, obvious question would probably be why—after four years as a cheerleader—Frampton suddenly came to such a revelation, in the middle of a game. It all seems a bit of an odd time to suddenly take a “stand” as her mother describes.
“It just felt wrong. I don’t know why,” the 11-year-old Faylene Frampton told NBC’s Today Show. “It just didn’t feel it was a cheer that was appropriate for kids of my age or younger.” The girl says she’d made previous complaints to cheerleading coach, Tina Harris, regarding her discomfort in performing the "booty" shake cheer. It is a bit unclear as to why, with such moral conflict, Frampton continued to remain on the Blue Jays cheer squad—rather than removing herself from the team at an earlier point in time. But, then, that wouldn't have created quite the same controversy as being "kicked off" of the squad.
The cheer, to which Frampton supposedly objects, involves cheerleading squad members to turn their backs to the bleachers, bend over, and move their pelvises side to side. Description of the cheerleading move sounds like pretty much the most basic "shake" performed by a squad. The cheer move had also been used in the school’s past, for Blue Jays performances—and, interestingly, specifically performed by Frampton.
The pre-teen says she never liked performing the "booty shake" cheer. She also says she told the cheer coach about her dislike for the move. Apparently, something was lost in translation—since it seems Frampton had not conveyed that she refused to do the cheer. When the Blue Jays’ cheerleading coach gave the signal for the “shake your booty” cheer during a mid-October school football game, Frampton decided she was going to do it—with coincidental timing of her refusal occurring during an actual game.
Her mom calls her daughter’s action, or lack of action, a “stand”—the school views it as insolence.
As one of the more senior members on the junior cheerleaders’ squad, the 11-year-old’s refusal to perform the "shake your booty" cheer in the middle of a football game—not surprisingly—resulted in her being sent home. Frampton’s dad was later informed, via phone call, that the cheer member would be benched for the school’s final two football games, for disrespecting the junior high school’s cheer squad coach.
Frampton’s mother, Sabrina Bobzien, says her pre-teen daughter’s act of defiance—in refusing to perform the “booty” shake cheer during a Blue Jays football game--was a moment to be proud of, not punished by being kicked off of the team. She takes pride in her young daughter’s lack of comfort in refusing to do something she felt was wrong—what Bobzien says was choosing to take a firm “stand” despite consequences.
“I’m proud she had a voice and she used it,” Bobzien says.
Perhaps that “voice” should have specified that Frampton didn’t want to be on the cheer squad—at a time earlier than in the middle of a school game performance. It appears that someone’s parents wanted to be in the newspaper and media—with “coincidental” timing of a 6-year-old cheerleader’s exit from her squad, after a similar “booty” experience that garnered national media exposure.
Frampton’s mother claims that her daughter's fourth year on the cheerleading team has been unnecessarily cut short due to her concerns about one of the cheers that included the phrase: "Jump, shake your booty, jump, jump, shake your booty."
Frampton’s mom says that the 11-year-old Frampton “felt it [the cheer] didn't have anything to do with the [Blue Jays] team as far as offense and defense goes. Being the older girl on the squad this year, she felt a little more uncomfortable shaking her booty than the other girls."
Well, with that, perhaps cheerleading is not her calling for future years—as the world surely knows, there’s a lot of “booty” shaking going on in the standard cheering realm.
The junior high school’s cheerleading coach, Harris, has told NBC that she didn’t find the cheer—which Frampton refused to perform--as sexually suggestive or objectionable. Interestingly, no one seems to really be disputing that idea, or insinuating that the cheer was questionably sexual or overt. Nonetheless, the junior high school has since dropped use of its “booty cheer”, from the football season’s last two games.
Coach Harris says no one had complained about the cheer prior—and says that explaining the controversy, and her decision to bench Faylene for the remainder of the season, was difficult.
In fact, to Coach Harris’ credit, the controversy might be a bit difficult to explain—the rather confusing portion of the whole mess lies in the idea that the 11-year-old’s “firm stand” happened to occur right in the middle of a school game and scheduled performance by the cheerleaders. Since the 11-year-old was supposedly a leader, upset of a game—during an actual performance—seems more along the lines of attempts to garner attention than taking a “stand”.
Former cheerleader Frampton says she’d make the same decision again. “I don't much regret it. I feel like what I did was right,” the 11-year-old told Hall. Maybe the cheerleader should have considered her internal battle with morality before the last two games of the season.
The Frampton extravaganza follows the September 2010 controversy, where 6-year-old Kennedy Tesch was kicked off of her cheerleading squad in Michigan state, because the young girl claims she didn’t like the wording of a cheer which included the term “booty”.
“Booty” certainly seems to be making its rounds.