Corbett Middle School (Ore.) head football coach Randy Burbach took a stand by planning to hold his team's end-of-the-season party at a local Hooters restaurant. But the price he paid was much greater than the bill would have been, as Burbach was fired from his position, according to Tully Corcoran of FoxSports.com.
A large contingent of Burbach's players reportedly chose Hooters when asked where they wanted the party to be held, and rather than opting for a less controversial option, he aimed to grant his players' wish.
Corbett athletic director Jean-Paul Soulagnet ultimately decided that it was in the team's best interest to fire Burbach since the choice alienated some of the players on the team, according to the Associated Press.
"I asked him to change it because I want the kids to enjoy their season," Soulagnet said Tuesday. "If there are one or two kids not going to come because they're not comfortable or their parents are not comfortable, then we need to change it."
Although the majority of the players and parents were fine with it, Soulagnet said that "three or four" families complained.
Also, in a letter issued to parents, Soulagnet expressed concern about what type of message would be sent to the kids if the school allowed the party to take place at Hooters.
Some might say that this restaurant objectifies women. I would tend to agree. It is not a restaurant that I would feel good about my wife or daughter working at. I think it sends the wrong message to our young men and that saddens and worries me the most. I’m surprised that more families are not concerned. If my son had played on this team our family would not be in attendance as well. As a 21-year-old he was shocked about the location.
According to KGW TV in Portland, Ore., Burbach refused to budge from his stance because he didn't want the small group of people who took issue with it to dictate terms.
"(I'm) not allowing myself to be bullied by a vocal minority, is the war I want to win," Burbach said.
"You stand up for what you believe in," Burbach said. "I believe this is a proper venue."
Was firing Burbach a reasonable reaction?
Burbach may have lost his job, but he has garnered a great deal of support from Hooters. KGW TV is reporting that Burbach is planning on moving forward with the event even though it won't be sanctioned by the school, and Hooters will pick up the tab. Hooters will also make a donation to the Corbett booster fund.
It's impossible to say which side is right or wrong in this situation; Hooters is technically a legitimate restaurant, but parents and administrators have a right to dictate what their children are exposed to.
Whatever the case, it will be interesting to see if this situation sets a precedent for similar instances in the future.
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