Just because something is fascinating, doesn’t mean we should stare at it. How horrifying that TLC thought it was a good idea to put Toddlers and Tiaras on the air. It is anything but a good ida. It is a humiliating dive into the worst thing American culture has to offer the world – babies with fake hair, spray on tans, doing strip tease movements and faux pelvic thrusts. Oh, say it ain’t so.
The first time I saw a promo for the TLC freak show I thought, no. Not this. Anything but this. It isn’t enough that all of the trashy daytime talk shows are about “sexed out pregnant teens?” Someone at TLC should made an executive decision and just say no. He could have spared us, saved us from ourselves, not let us give in our most hideous impulses.
At best, Toddlers and Tiaras will shame the parents enough that they stop doing this to their little girls. Most likely, that won’t be happening any time soon. You just know people are not only watching it in droves, but are probably justifying it as a valid form of entertainment. I can just hear one of those moms who need to win barking at me, “she loves doing it! I wouldn’t make her do it if she wanted to do it!”
There are a lot of things kids wish they could do but that doesn’t mean parents should let them. This is a long way from Little Miss Sunshine and, frankly, children should be spared the group grope that is going on between television and audiences. A line should be drawn, for crying out loud.
And, of course, there is the darker side to it all. Isn’t it hard enough to keep child pornographers at bay? Who knows what they’re going to make of all of this. Well, I guess we pretty much guess. The pageant apologist would then bark at me, “why should we have our fun spoiled just because of the child molesters?” Because you should, I would say.
Children have been on television for decades. But they haven’t been on television in spangly stripper outfits with full makeup and big, fake wigs, not to mention the fake eyelashes, the glitter and the lip gloss. Toddlers, mind you. In one episode a little three year-old is being taught how to wiggle her hips and swing her clothes off of her. Her mother clapped wildly afterwards. “She so cute,” she said.
These awful pageants aren’t going to end any time soon. All mothers love their kids and believe them to be the most beautiful, special creatures. They want the world to know it. So why then, one wonders, is it necessary to truss them up like they do.
Isn’t their natural beauty more than enough?
Here’s to hoping parents out there are as hysterical and offended as I am and TLC makes the right decision to take the show off the air. Children need to be protected. If parents aren’t going to do it, and the show’s producers aren’t, perhaps viewers need to step up and make a few phone calls.