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Children's Beauty Pageants? Essay

1070 words - 5 pages

Australian and New Zealand psychiatrists have backed calls for child beauty pageants to be banned, saying they encourage the sexualisation of children and can cause developmental harm (Park). Beauty pageants are a controversial topic all over the country because they make children look "sexy", can cause eating disorders/ body image issues, and in some cases are forced into pageants because their mothers want to live their dreams through their child. Children should not be allowed to be in beauty pageants.
Hair, skimpy outfits, and makeup play a large role in beauty pageants. After all, children are competing to be the cutest, and if their appearance makes them look cute they could win. ...view middle of the document...

"For the girls who do develop image obsessions, it appears that the hypercritical environment of their youth produces a drive towards the unattainable goal of physical perfection"(Cartwright). Children should not have to worry about what they look like; that is too much pressure on a child.
"It is believed that, many parents live vicariously through their children so as to accomplish the things they couldn't achieve in their own lives. For many mothers, it is a way of reliving the past through their children " (Maliakal). They are children, they don't even fully know what they want, so in some cases they are forced into pageants because it's what mommy wants and they want mommy to be happy. These mothers don't even realize that they are parading these children; when a beauty pageant is won a picture of the new beauty queen is in the paper for all to see, even pedophiles. Many mothers don't even realize they are doing this. It probably didn't cross their minds if they forced their kids into it because they (mother) did it themselves as a child and nothing happened, or if they weren't allowed and didn't see the harm in it. Children are supposed to live in their imagination, not their mothers dreams.
Some will argue that it teaches the children social skills, determination, and that it gives them self confidence. However, teaching children to do whatever it takes to win may teach them to be "two faced" or "fake". Beauty pageants don't teach children determination, they get little girls hopes up and then destroy them when they don't win. Thus making them lose confidence. In beauty pageants the little girls tend to wear little clothing, would you feel confident in little clothing? "The clothes that the participants are expected to wear are not meant for children. Revealing swimming costume such as bikinis and evening gowns are inappropriate for children. Such clothes are meant to be worn by adults only" (Maliakal). Beauty pageants teach children that it's ok to let people judge you and that you need to change to please people. Children don't take away much from a beauty pageant except for tears, broken dreams,...

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