Friday, May 21, 2010

Not Shocked by Little Girls' Single Ladyin' It

The story has had a lot of buzz all week on TV and the web, but I just can't bring myself to being outraged (Outraged, I tell you!) by the video of the 7 to 9-year old girls performing a dance routine to Beyonce's "All the Single Ladies" (below for reference, also see the video replies). That's speaking as a father of daughters, including one of this age, and having a goddaughter this age who dances. Perhaps it's because I've seen it all before. Sexualizing little girls is not new (JonBenet Ramsey blew the cover off one similar world hidden in plain sight).

It is really all about the outfits. And the grind move at 1:47. Put the girls in t-shirts and stretch pants and most of the sensationalism of it disappears. Even the grind becomes less provocative.

I'm not sure how to address Dance Mom's. They are a special breed, as any who try to resist the dance vortex could tell you. Resistance is futile. I mean, you never see fathers like that with their boys in sports, or anything. Anyway, this is for the dads:
Don't get stuck on stupid. You have sexualized your girls. Yes, I know girls wear skimpy outfits in gymnastics and figure skating and swimming, too, not just dance. But those outfits are skimpy, even by dance standards. And they look like pole dancers' outfits. I know it, and so do you, and you can bet other men know it, too.

I know that almost all those moves have been around in gymnastics and comp cheer for at least a generation. But that routine lifts elements straight from Beyonce's video (below for reference), including the grind; a video that oozes sexuality and where, ironically, Beyonce is covered more than those girls. So save your rationalizations about the athleticism, the discipline, the teamwork, etc. Your girls deserve better from you.

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