This is a true story about a young girl named Katie, whose mother happens to be a blogger for Chicago Now. Here's what her mother posted on Monday:
At summer's end, Katie and I went to Target to pick out her backpack, lunchbox and water bottle for the new school year. After great deliberation, she chose a Star Wars water bottle to match her Star Wars backpack.
Katie loves Star Wars, and she was very excited about her new items. For the first few months of school, she proudly filled her water bottle herself and helped me pack her lunch each morning.
But a week ago, as we were packing her lunch, Katie said, "My Star Wars water bottle is too small. It doesn't hold enough water. Can I take a different one?" She searched through the cupboard until she found a pink water bottle and said, "I'll bring this."
I was perplexed. "Katie, that water bottle is no bigger than your Star Wars one. I think it is actually smaller."
"It's fine, I'll just take it," she insisted.
I kept pushing the issue, because it didn't make sense to me. Suddenly, Katie burst into tears.
She wailed, "The first grade boys are teasing me at lunch because I have a Star Wars water bottle. They say it's only for boys. Every day they make fun of me for drinking out of it. I want them to stop, so I'll just bring a pink water bottle."
In the words of my favorite geek blogger who brought this to my attention, OH, HELL NO.
This will not stand. Geek girls are a treasure and must be revered. Plus, this is a little girl being bullied and that's just bullshit right there. But being bullied for loving Star Wars because Star Wars is "only for boys?" That's a special crossed line.
Katie's mom asked for comments from nerd girls on her blog post, to let Katie know she's not alone. Right now she has nearly 1,000 messages of support, that Katie's been reading herself -- to the point where she proudly wore a Star Wars shirt to school yesterday. But I don't see any reason to stop there. All you Star Wars fangirls out there, please stop by the blog and offer a few words of support to Katie. You can also go onto Twitter and Tweet about it using #MayTheForceBeWithKatie. I would greatly appreciate it, but I bet not as much as Katie would.