Child Beauty Pageants? Now Infant ‘Hookers’?
Definition of a good parent (pick three):
A. [ ] Love
B. [ ] Setting boundaries
C. [ ] Showing respect
D. [ ] Dressing your toddler in skimpy clothes, as a prostitute, and parading her on stage, to the tune of “Pretty Woman”
The last option relates to this story, in the Herald, yesterday,
Firstly, let me make it quite clear: I do not condone sending death threats. That is a big No-No, and defeats the purpose of what one is trying to accomplish.
Secondly, in my previous pieces, I wondered where the hell Western society was heading with these so-called “Child Beauty Pageants”.
These events seemed to be getting more sexualised with each passing year. With the inevitable commercialisation of these “pageants”, there is greater pressure on participating parents to present their children in more graphic and outrageous ways. To me, this is legally-acceptable; socially-sanctioned; quasi-paedophilia. It sez more about the mind-set of parent(s) of these children then we could imagine.
I absolutely reject the claim by “pageant” participants, supporters, and apologists, that these events are simply “harmless fun”. I also reject the claims by people such as one child model’s mother who claimed that,
“If you see sex when you look at my six year old child, that’s not her fault. It’s a sign of somebody being sick in the mind’”
Just because parents dress their daughters in sexually-provacative, adult-style clothing, and then make them do a “bump’n’grind” routine on a public stage – that makes it everyone elses’ fault when they are repulsed by the objectification of their own child?
I don’t think so.
The reaction of nausea and revulsion at these “pageants” is a normal reaction of people who understand that there should be a clear demarcation between children and child’s play and adult activities involving adult themes.
This is as far removed from children playing “dress up” as a medical X-Ray machine is from an atomic bomb. Both produce x-rays, but you wouldn’t detonate a A Bomb in your city.
It is disturbing to learn that “Universal Royalty” is planning to bring these repugnant events to our country. As if New Zealand hasn’t imported enough negative aspects of American culture already?
The objectification as women as sexual objects permeates almost every aspect of Western society, whether it be magazines, television, movies, advertising, music videos, etc. It appears that some in Western society are pushing the boundaries even further, bringing younger and younger girls into commercialised, quasi-sexualised activities. It seems that our If-it’s-not-illegal-then-do-it attitude is impacting on children as young as two or three.
What next? Strip-tease? Semi-nudity? I give it a couple of years before the boundary is pushed to that limit and beyond.
And the incredibly disturbing aspect of all this is that it is not the stereotypical paedophiles – men in trench coats – that are the perpetrators here. It is parents.
I believe we need to understand a simple fact; parents do not always make the right choices for their children. The high level of child neglect, abuse, violence, and killings makes that abundantly clear. Whilst 99% of parents would not have a bar with these odious “pageants”, it is the remaining 1%, and their apologists, that must concern a community.
Unfortunately, there are most likely some adults – parents – who do not understand the nature nor ramifications of this activity and would see nothing wrong in putting their children into such an environment. Just as there are other parents who see nothing wrong in smoking in the presence of their children. Or giving sugary fizzy-drinks to toddlers. Or…
It is said that it takes a village to raise a child. Sometimes, that village has to step up to the mark and tell a parent that their ideas or behaviour is unacceptable.
“Child beauty pageants” are unacceptable. They are organised by adults; for the gratification of adults; and controlled by adults. The child participants are on stage for display only.
That is objectification.
I hope people take time, a few minutes from their busy schedules, to email Annette Hill ( email@example.com ) to politely request that she stay away. We simply don’t need further Americanisation of our culture. We don’t need our children to grow up any faster than they already do. And we don’t need them to become sexualised objects.
This is not normal for our kids.
Their email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
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