Beauty Pageants

1. Beauty pageants began in 1854, by P.T. Barnum, founder of Barnum & Bailey. He wanted to basically, show off women to the world. Protestors quickly shut down his whole idea; middle class townspeople thought of beauty pageants to be disrespectful and somewhat sleazy. If only they could see what beauty pageants are like today. In 1880, Bathing Beauty pageants were introduced. Men and women would flaunt around on a stage, showing off their bodies in bathing suits. But that was okay, since bathing suits weren’t as revealing back then as they are now.

2. In the past, beauty pageant contestants were known to have no intelligence whatsoever. They were just there to look at. But judges eventually changed that and now the main purpose is to encourage the girl to be all she can be. It’s to teach her that she is more than just a pretty face, she has talents and she can change the world if she puts her mind to it. Participants learn to speak publicly, and when they return home they are encouraged to start charities and to get involved with her community. The pageants are racially equal so any women can participate in a pageant.

3. All of that sounds great, and it is…for mature women. Not toddlers. Beauty pageants now are becoming more and more absurd. In 2009, the show Toddlers and Tiaras debuted and the world went crazy. It was so cute to see babies running around on stage making kissy faces at the camera and batting their mascara-filled eyelashes at the audience. Mommies and daddies were so proud of their little girl because she was famous now. The whole world knew her name.

4. Soon after the show took off, people began taking sides. I found a debate website that was discussing toddler beauty pageants. One mom said this, “Everyone's baby is beautiful. Don't display her. PLAY with her!” She makes a good point. A baby or even a young girl doesn’t need to be told by the world that she’s beautiful and talented. All she needs is her parents to love her and show her affection. Another website that was solely for discussing child beauty pageants offered this. A mother by the name of Gianna Ferazzi said, “Sexed-up little girls sashaying down a cat-walk or stage in full makeup with teased hair and glitzy dresses isn't amusing or cute. In fact, it borders on child abuse. It doesn't matter whether or not we are "stage moms." It doesn't matter that we are only supporting our young daughter in fulfilling her dream of being a pageant princess. As parents we have a right to put our feet down and say no. If we are conscientious parents we will not allow our daughters to be objectified in this way, especially at a tender age, when their confidence and self-imagine can be irreparably damaged.”

5. Basically, these toddler pageant shows are ruining the minds of little girls. Instead of playing with barbies and baby dolls, they have to get their eyebrows waxed and wear loads of lipstick just because Mommy says to. It’s sad. The mothers are really the people to blame. They get so caught up in the fame that they put their children through crap just to keep them on the stage. Like this, for instance. toddtiara1.jpg

That poor girl obviously doesn't want to have her mother poking eyeliner in her eye.

6. Beauty pageants have many pros and cons. They teach girls about discipline and competition but at the same time, they’re being turned into overly sexual children. In my opinion, a little girl should not be strutting her stuff on stage wearing only a bikini with her hair and makeup resembling that of a porn star.

z198735639.jpg This girl is, like, six. 'Nuff said.

7. I think beauty pageants should only be for mature women. Toddlers can’t handle the emotional stress that comes along with being involved in a beauty contest. If you want your little girl to be part of a beauty pageant, send her pictures to a clothing store and have her model children’s clothes. But shows like Toddlers and Tiaras and Little Miss perfect are too harmful and dangerous for little girls. For instance, the JonBenet case. In 1996 the poster child for beauty pageants was murdered in her own home. She was only six years old and was famous for her pretty face. She was targeted and killed. Beauty pageant shows are risky. That right there proves it. That’s why I think beauty pageants should have requirements. There should be an age limit. In my own opinion, any one under thirteen is too young to be involved in this kind of showy fad. After all, the old saying true beauty is found within makes more sense than many realize.