It is a hot topic here in Australia at the moment, the imminent arrival of US style kids beauty pageants. The ACA story above shows some of the facets.
As a woman and a mother I certainly have some very strong opinions on this topic. I would also like to acknowledge that the mothers who choose to place their daughters in these events would also have strong opinions. But today I wanted to seek the opinion of the group who is the focus of these events; young girls.
So I watched the video with my 8-year-old daughter to see what her reaction would be. I did not tell her what we were watching nor have I expressed my opinion about it in front of her thus far.
As the video played her first exclamation was “They look disgusting!”
Than at (time marker) 3:34 into the video when Melbourne Mum Ms. K Kyle says “It is every little girls dream to put make up on”. My little girl vehemently denied this to be true and countered the assumption with “it ruins your skin as well as making you look NOT like you”. I couldn’t have said it better myself.
In the interest of full disclosure I would like to say my daughter has done 2 bits of modelling work for magazines. When we discussed the possibility of these opportunities it was explained by me that it was a job, that it was about responsibility and if she chose to do it then she would have to commit to seeing it through because other people would be relying on her. That it may have some fun aspects but it may also be boring after a while. In one of the shoots she wore a dusting of loose powder and in the other, no make up at all. The hair was just her own brushed as nicely as possible.
She chose to do them because I think she enjoys the interaction with the photographer. There will be people who disagree with my decision to allow her to do even this and I certainly value and understand where you are coming from.
But I think we can all agree that these beauty pageants are a whole other level of concern. There is nothing natural nor even beautiful about them. Not even through the eyes of my little Miss. I wonder how many other little Misses would feel the same? How many of the ones partaking in these events would express the same when their Mother’s were not hovering over them.
In conclusion to our Mummy daughter session on this topic Miss 8 queried “Why would they want to worry about revolting make-up and silly walking when there are so many more important things to be concerned with?” I asked her to expand upon the “more important things” and she did with “Like concentrating on becoming a better person and what type of job you will do as an adult and how to get that job. You will just be so used to only modelling and wont know anything else. You wont know what to do when you can’t do modelling, because you might not be able to get a job modelling. Also, you can’t consistently keep doing pageants”.
We live in hope.
If you want to read more of my opinionated Misses work she did a blog post a while back for 7 Wonderlicious HERE on what it means to be an intelligent girl.