Do you kiss your mother with that mouth, Dora the Explorer? Ay, que pena.
OK, so it’s not the actual cartoon character we’re talking about, but instead the 15-year-old “voice actress” who brings Dora to life. With her voice. And she’s gotten herself into some very non-Nickelodeon-type trouble with a classmate.
According to a 14-year-old referred to as M.S. in court documents, Fatima Ptacek (aka, Dora) persuaded her to enter the bathroom at their $40,000-a-year New York private school and went all Regina George on her ass, trying to peer-pressure her into smoking from a vape pen. A vape pen! How very glamorous and refined. I guess kids don’t steal the cigarette butts out of their friend’s father’s ashtray and then ride their 10-speed to the neighborhood wash to smoke them anymore.
“I told her I didn’t want to, but she called me a ‘pussy’ and my competitive side kicked in,” M.S. said in the suit. Ptacek also “said some very unkind, hurtful things that in the moment made me feel vulnerable.”
The two were busted for vaping in the girls’ room, and while the “voice actress” was only given a three-day suspension, the non-“voice actress” was told to kick rocks and expelled from the overpriced school that is seriously named Avenues: The World School (we didn’t make that up).
M.S. went on to say, “I know that had I been presented with a situation like this again and had she made me feel pressured again I probably would have given in, in need to feel ‘cool’ or ‘accepted,’ which is a level that I cannot believe I stooped down to.”
M.S.’s parents, Nadia Leonelli and Fredrik Sundwall, claim their daughter is being using as a scapegoat in the situation and are suing the school to reclaim the $10,000 in legal fees they paid to fight their daughter’s expulsion, plus a tuition refund.
You can’t really blame Dora. She’s a seasoned traveler who has been all over the world and witnessed all sorts of cultures. It’s not her fault if her naturally progressive maturity level is interpreted as being a bad influence on a sheltered private school girl.