When I view the J Crew ad this is what I see.
This was the focus for me – a moment of delight and love passing between a mother and her son.
As I was quoted saying in this wicked smart Ms. Magazine piece by the fierce Melanie Klein (also a mother to a young son):
“The camera has to zoom in SO much on the toes to make the news story, you completely lose sight of the delightful moment between loving, doting mother and happy, beautiful son.”
You all know I’m a big picture kinda gal, and I don’t look at the world with fear and hate, which is why when I first read about this ridiculous ass hat controversy in the wee hours of Monday morning when I was up late working, overtired and annoyed by the stupidity of such a non-issue, I closed the link and didn’t give it much thought. I didn’t bookmark it to blog about or share with the Pigtail Pals parent community because of the aforementioned ass hattedness of it all. I was offended the fear mongering and homophobic conservative media created an issue out of nothing, and did so at the the expense of a mother loving her son (in an advertisement, mind you). I was reluctant to share a “news” piece linked from FOX News (a four letter word in my house).
If ever there was an example of picking gnat shit out of pepper, the media has done it a thousand times over.
Wednesday morning came around and you’d think there wasn’t an entire global region is hisitoric political upheaval or an armageddon-like nuclear disaster in a population-dense country or a massive budget crisis in this country….
Because the morning brought the whole country talking about nail polish. Seriously? What’s worse, we were debating whether or not the application of hot pink nail polish to the feet of a five year old boy could in any way affect his sex, sexual identity, and sexual orientation. Pink nail polish on this young boy will no more turn him into a transgendered person than would green polish on my son turn him into a millionaire or would purple turn him into an eggplant.
What does need to be addressed, is the gender constraint and gender policing going on in this hullabaloo. From the moment go nearly two years ago, Pigtail Pals has put a direct challenge to the marketing and products that I know to be objectifiying, limiting, stereotyping and sexualizing our girls. What we must know as parents and people who care about children – we must afford this same right to our sons.
You’ll be hearing more from me and Melanie Klein in the coming weeks about raising sons, and Pigtail Pals has already begun creating a brother line of designs to honor our wonder full boys.
So for now, this is my official comment on this mess, actually comes from a fave mom blogger of mine named Jennifer (also a mom to a young son), and is important as it applies to all of us who have ever raised a little boy:
He thinks it looks pretty and just wants to be like the people he loves.
Just in case I’m wrong about the powerful transformative powers of nail polish, later today I’m going to paint my car in my chocolately OPI and see if it turns into a pony.
*Our friend Dr. Logan Levkoff writes a great post for the HuffPo here. “Colors are just colors.”
*Our friend Peggy Orenstein writes a great post with an important history lesson here.
*Our friend Dr. Robyn Silverman uses some restraint and common sense to remind us, “This is an ad.” Her TODAY Show clip here.