Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Over-sexualizing young children

"I like to see a naked baby."  Now is this the statement of a pedophile or a blurt taken out of context?

It's a blurt taken out of context.  I said it while my husband was stripping our toddler down in order to give him a bath.  My husband gave me a funny look and I said "what? I didn't mean anything by it."  He said that he knew what I meant, but it was still an odd comment.  Am I a pedophile?  Do have unnatural attractions to small children?  No, unless you include watching cute topless babies running around in fluffy bottoms as being an unnatural attraction.  But then that would mean the greater part of society has some strange attraction to cute topless babies and toddlers.  Just look at the pink bottle of Coppertone.  Is that meant to be child pornography?

Don't get me wrong.  I realize that pedophiles exist.  It's sick and unnaturally twisted.  They view small children as sexual objects instead of well...cute fluffy bottomed bits of joy.  And I seriously don't want to meet up with a person who thinks of children as being sexual objects.

Unfortunately society being what society is has already over-sexualized young children.  Manufacturers are making push up bras for young infants.  And I've worked around children long enough to know that the vast majority of them now wear bikinis instead of one-piece swim suits.  Granted I'm not sure if this is meant to sexualize a child or make the child feel grown up like their already immodest parental counterparts.  Either way it's fodder for pedophiles.

What's worse is I recently read some article suggesting that the Obama administration views children as being sexual beings.  If he means they have sex organs, okay, they do.  But the wording of the article suggests that young children masturbate.  Yes, young children explore the functions of their body, but grabbing your feet and eating your toes is the same darn thing in the mind of the child.  Masturbation is sexual self-gratification.  You really can't equate the two.  The HHS has since removed the offending commentary from their website.

But it begs the question of whatever happened to enjoying cute huggable kissable children?  Have we moved so far that now even normal off-handed comments are being misconstrued as sexual attraction? 

Unfortunately even innocent pictures of children in the tub or running around their home in the nude has caused some people to go overboard and contact the police and CPS.  Child pornography laws stipulate that in order for a naked baby photo to be considered pornography there has to be something sexual about it.  Yet the world will end if someone takes their old 35mm to Walgreens and has pictures of their now adult child in the bath tub.  Oh, the horror!

I suppose my point is that while it's important to protect children from predators and from making them into sexual beings on par with adults/teens, it makes being a normal parents job harder and more restrictive.  Children are cute cuddly beings.  If women's breast show up on a breastfeeding photo (and it not sexual) or a man topless mows the lawn, what's wrong a little kids booty showing up in a picture?  None of those things are sexual.

2 comments:

  1. I could not agree with you more. When I was a very little girl, about two or so, my mom let me run around the beach in just a diaper and diaper cover. In going over over old pictures with her and seeing this, I asked her once why she didn't at least pop a bikini top on me - it seemed strange, because she was pretty interested in sartorial propriety, in my opinion. "Because bikini tops are made specifically to hide and support fully grown breasts, and to me, it would have been more sick to dress you up as if you had such a thing than to acknowledge that you were a child." Made sense to me then, makes sense to me now.

    I remember two things clearly from a summer I was in Hungary in a medium-sized town. In the scorching summer heat, mothers strolled down the block from their apartment buildings to the market with naked babies on their hips. To me it seemed like a risk only in the sense that they were risking getting piddled on! Nobody batted an eyelash; it was just a part of life. I also remember mothers opening up their dresses and breastfeeding during Mass; nobody batted an eyelash, then, either. I'm not suggesting that we make going to the store with a naked baby a part of U.S. culture, but at the same time, our reaction against such a thing is so extreme that it itself is kind of sick.

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  2. Thank you! My gosh, common sense is refreshing!!!

    And, thank you for the great comment on my blog. You are a great addition!

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