19 Sep 2013

French Senate Places Ban On Beauty Pageants For Kids

Thank goodness for this new development because I have never liked the idea of toddlers going into beauty contest such as “Toddlers & Tiaras” and its spin-off, “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo,” that feature very young contestants including babies. I believe there are better activities to engage them with that will impact their lives positively than flaunting their sexuality too early.

The French Parliament on Wednesday (yesterday) voted on a bill that would make beauty pageantry illegal for participants under the age of 16. The vote passed the French Senate 196-146, and the ban will be headed to the National Assembly before it’s made law.

Lawmakers kept the language short and sweet: “organizing beauty competitions for children under 16 is banned.” Pageant organizers as well as parents who pressure kids into entering could face two years in prison and a 30,000 euro fine, and the language is general enough to cover basic photo competitions or “pretty baby” contests.

Beauty contests in France and worldwide have been rife with controversy and subject to public outrage in recent months following a number of incidents including a Vogue magazine cover which featured a provocative image of a 10-year-old girl and the recent disappearance of a beauty queen and her mother days before she was to compete in a competition.

Such pageants which involve dressing girls up to look like adults with extreme hair and makeup have been criticized for sending a negative message to young girls – namely that they are sexual beings that should be judged by their physical appearance.

Furthermore, advertising and marketing campaigns have been guilty of promoting children as sexual objects with some designers even selling lingerie for girls as young as 4. ABC News noted that department stores the world over are now selling sexy lingerie directed at kids between the ages of 10 to 12 years old.

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