Walking in San Francisco today, I saw an ad on the side of a bus that made me cringe.
“Dancey-pants”? Granted, I’m not one for baby talk, but If you don’t have your cringe-face on, just imagine a boy in this ad. What is disturbing to me is that this is an ad for pediatrics, for children’s health for goodness sake. Don’t these organizations know better than to promote gender stereotypes? Stanford, CPMC, and Sutter Health, please don’t out kids in stupid, sexist boxes. It’s not healthy.
I am imagining a boy in this ad, and it’s adorable. Now, I would agree that sexism is in play under one circumstance: Is there another version of this ad, one with a boy, saying something like “tummy ache gone, karate pants on!” Then I’d see a problem. But many human beings love dancing regardless of gender. I cried tears of joy the other day when I watched a video of a young man at my college receiving pointe shoes for his birthday, which he thought he’d never be able to do (he wasn’t allowed to dance until he got to college, and believed himself too old and too big for pointe). So I don’t believe that “dancey pants” is the issue here.
When I showed this to a real existing female friend of mine, a mother of two (one boy, one girl), she noted that the superwoman in your Reel Girl logo is rather sexy and should perhaps instead be overweight, have short hair, and no make up to avoid promoting gender stereotypes.
Another female friend said that she’s fine with dancey pants for all people and that you should perhaps get over your own white privileged self, and if this was your definition of sexism, you might need a cold hard look at the real world. She added: “I’m a feminist , a single mom of a mixed boy, and we are fine with dancey pants. It’s not like the girl in the ad was wearing an apron and holding a spatula. #getoverit”. Her beautiful boy wears dancey pants and pink – regularly.
I will add that I regularly see an approx. 5 year old boy in my street playing in dresses and that I see no harm in that, nor would I if he were to be featured in an advert for children’s health. Quite the contrary. What I personally don’t like is that your title seems to suggest that if one doesn’t subscribe to your idea of sexism, one is a sexist.
If you looked in the about section of my blog you would see how and why this image was created.
I’m white, happily married and still a “real existing feminist”!
I did and was neither denying your motherhood or being a feminist.