All the single...children?
May 12, 2010 12:29 PM   Subscribe

 
Life Imitates Little Miss Sunshine.
posted by gurple at 12:30 PM on May 12, 2010 [11 favorites]


Oh, Lady Gaga should do a cover of this! That would be so awesome!
posted by Naberius at 12:32 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Creepy as hell. Are they possessed or something?
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:33 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Single Ladies" is so 2008. These little girls should be wearing cigarette sunglasses or something.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 12:33 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


I find this deeply deeply disturbing, and even though you have a 'pedophilia' tag, I'm not sure it should be here except as part of a longer post on the creepy sexualisation of youth.
posted by knapah at 12:34 PM on May 12, 2010 [6 favorites]


This is creepy. Why do I feel guilty of something for watching this?
posted by Think_Long at 12:34 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


I realize the skill and athleticism involved, but I would not want my daughter doing this.
posted by mazola at 12:35 PM on May 12, 2010 [18 favorites]


This makes me want to murder America in the face.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 12:35 PM on May 12, 2010 [69 favorites]


I'm kinda scared: #1, crazy sexualized girls wearing burlesque clothing #2, these girls are going to beat me up
posted by fontophilic at 12:35 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


I've watched it. Now arrest me.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 12:36 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


Dear terrorists: I'm pretty sure that this was in Canada. No, seriously, it was Canada. Maybe Sweden. Not America.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 12:36 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


DO NOT WANT and, as such, WILL NOT PUT RING ON IT.

Really, I find this kind of thing super creepy. As others have noted.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 12:38 PM on May 12, 2010 [18 favorites]


Dear terrorists: I'm pretty sure that this was in Canada. No, seriously, it was Canada. Maybe Sweden. Not America.

Heh. As funny as that is, I'm sad to report it was in Pomona as part of the World Dance Tour.
posted by Lutoslawski at 12:38 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


"This video contains content from Sony Music Entertainment. It is no longer available in your country."

First time I'm happy to see this, regarding previous comments.
posted by starzero at 12:38 PM on May 12, 2010


Heh. As funny as that is, I'm sad to report it was in Pomona as part of the World Dance Tour.

Yep, good old Pomona, Canada. I love that place! All those nice, big, strong, totally bomb-proof buildings! What an amazing town!

seriously, dude, don't blow this, you know they hate shit like this!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 12:40 PM on May 12, 2010 [4 favorites]


Metafilter, sometimes I doubt your commitment to Sparkle Motion.
posted by monkeystronghold at 12:40 PM on May 12, 2010 [43 favorites]


Those girls are very talented. Their parents should be proud of their ability.

Their parents should also be horsewhipped for letting this happen.
posted by Nothing... and like it at 12:41 PM on May 12, 2010 [34 favorites]


Wow, in my dance recital when I was seven, we did shuffle-shuffle-step in tap shoes to In the Mood.
posted by phunniemee at 12:41 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Really, I find this kind of thing super creepy. As others have noted.

To be clear, I also find this really creepy. It was the "wow, these girls are incredible dancers...wait...what the fuck????" element that interested (? not the right word, perhaps) me.
posted by Lutoslawski at 12:41 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


Gross.
posted by hermitosis at 12:42 PM on May 12, 2010


Next up on Instructables.com, how to cut a stripper pole to the best size for your seven-year-old.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:43 PM on May 12, 2010 [6 favorites]


i am genuinely impressed despite being creeped out
posted by p3on at 12:43 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


Sick.
posted by tula at 12:43 PM on May 12, 2010


Yep, good old Pomona, Canada. I love that place! All those nice, big, strong, totally bomb-proof buildings! What an amazing town!

Oh, oh my bad. Yeah, Pomona, Canada. A scenic place, really, but boy - you do NOT want to know what the night life and entertainment scene there is like. Wooeee. Pomona, Canada is practically the new Gomorrah.
posted by Lutoslawski at 12:44 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm just going to go ahead and link to the kid doing that heartfelt Paparazzi cover. Funny that a Gaga link can feel so... wholesome, compared to the fpp, though.
posted by biddeford at 12:44 PM on May 12, 2010 [16 favorites]


Oh, oh my bad. Yeah, Pomona, Canada. A scenic place, really, but boy - you do NOT want to know what the night life and entertainment scene there is like. Wooeee. Pomona, Canada is practically the new Gomorrah.

Yeeeeeeeah, that's the ticket!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 12:45 PM on May 12, 2010


I happily volunteer to horsewhip every single parent who allowed their CHILD to perform those moves in those costumes. Inappropriate is the MILDEST thing I can say.

Seven. years. old.


That someone could encourage these children-who do not understand how provocative and inappropriate those moves are, and who do not understand how provocative and inappropriate those outfits are....in my mind it's criminal.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 12:45 PM on May 12, 2010


nthing "creepy". Sometimes I doubt my commitment to Sparkle Motion.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 12:45 PM on May 12, 2010 [4 favorites]


I am a permissive person and I think kink is great and everything should be sexy and we are all too embarrassed about sex but really the sexual attractiveness of seven year olds is one of those things that I am OK with treating as a taboo subject.
posted by idiopath at 12:45 PM on May 12, 2010 [7 favorites]


If we must have sexualization of little children - and given cultural leanings it appears we must, sadly - then at least in this case it's an empowering, tough feminity (set to "Single Ladies," probably the best "fuck you Mr. Man" song in years) that's being sexualized rather than the endlessly annoying diva-hop that passes for girl hip-hop choreo these days.

I know, it's not quite consolation, but.
posted by mightygodking at 12:46 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


seriously, dude, don't blow this, you know they hate shit like this!

They hate shit like this? Frankly it's the people who don't hate shit like this that I'm afraid of.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:46 PM on May 12, 2010


Those aren't seven year olds, right? They're, um, little people? Because seriously seven year old girls shouldn't move like that and good god.
posted by jokeefe at 12:47 PM on May 12, 2010


They hate shit like this? Frankly it's the people who don't hate shit like this that I'm afraid of.

Agreed! I can't believe Canadians aren't more outraged by what's happening in their country!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 12:47 PM on May 12, 2010


empowering, tough feminity (set to "Single Ladies," probably the best "fuck you Mr. Man" song in years)

I love me some Single Ladies, but I have to disagree on this.
posted by jokeefe at 12:48 PM on May 12, 2010


Nice try with the Canadian stuff, guys.
posted by jokeefe at 12:48 PM on May 12, 2010


This reddit stuff from like 10 days ago just now got here?
posted by cashman at 12:50 PM on May 12, 2010


I need to go wash my eyes now.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 12:51 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


This reddit stuff from like 10 days ago just now got here?

not all of us waste our time on reddit, you know.

posted by Lutoslawski at 12:51 PM on May 12, 2010 [5 favorites]


I'm just going to go ahead and link to the kid doing that heartfelt Paparazzi cover

That poor kid...If this is his grade school he's either just killed his chances with women until college or turned himself into a legend. The horrified/dumbfounded looks from the girls in the background suggest the former.
posted by moviehawk at 12:52 PM on May 12, 2010


This is all the "I'm so sorry, buddy, you're a single lady, okay?" guy's fault.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 12:52 PM on May 12, 2010 [6 favorites]


Well, as a father, I've come to realize that just about every girl in America under 8 that saw that video decided that they just had to learn those moves. Even though it's one of the toughest fucking pieces of choreography in music video ever.

So chances are that these 7-year-olds just felt they had to bust out doing that shit, and they had little idea about the sexual aspect of it, and the parents mostly felt they couldn't help but encourage the enthusiasm of their children because that's what they're supposed to do, right?

So I'm not that disturbed by this. Child beauty pageants are sick, though.
posted by fungible at 12:52 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


If you need to re-balance, here are three senior citizens dancing to Billie Jean.
posted by mazola at 12:54 PM on May 12, 2010 [18 favorites]


"History is on our side. We'll be using America's own decadence as a weapon against her, and it's a weapon for which there is no defence."

'History is on our side.' I cannot get those words out of my head. Land of Lincoln and Franklin and Melville, I love you and wish you well. But into my heart blows a cold wind from the past; for I remember Babylon.

--- Arthur C. Clarke, first published in Playboy, April 1960
posted by hank at 12:54 PM on May 12, 2010 [6 favorites]


fungible, you're giving those little girls too much credit and their parents and the dance school too little blame. They seem to be at a kiddie dance competition, the kissin' cousin to the baby beauty pageant and only slightly less icky*. Those little girls did not design or buy those costumes. Yuck, yuck, yuck.

*now not less icky at all
posted by Sweetie Darling at 12:55 PM on May 12, 2010


So do you all think that you and your close friends were the only children who were not oblivious to sexuality? Because in my experience (and the experience of those who I have talked to about the subject) we pretty much were fascinated by sexuality, even if ignorant of many of the details. One of the first things you learn about all things sexual is that adults get really angry if it seems like you know anything about it so you have to pretend you don't know shit about it. By five years old you can kind of pick out what is "sexy" because of the way adults respond to your seeing it or asking questions about it.

Of course encouraging children to display "sexy" behavior for an audience of adults is really inappropriate, but don't pretend that kids don't have some curiousity and some level of knowledge about this stuff.
posted by idiopath at 12:57 PM on May 12, 2010 [8 favorites]


For seven-year-olds, they are very good dancers. Very precise in their movements, lots of amplitude, etc. But the shake-your-booty, cat crouching, etc moves are disturbingly sexual for such youngsters. Do they even realize what they're doing, or are they just following the instructions of their choreographer?

About a month ago I attended the 8th birthday party of the kid next door at the request of her mother. She needed a few additional adults to control the kids. She was woefully unprepared for 20 7 and 8 year olds other than the food. No games or activities planned. When the screaming and running around and hitting one another got to fever pitch I suggested an American Idol-type dance contest. We put a song on the stereo and the kids who wanted to dance would be judged by the adults and the kids who didn't dance. I halted the game after the second song; these were seven and eight year old boys and girls who were bumping and grinding and crunking and lifting their shirts while caressing their midriffs. I presume they learn this behavior from MTV and TV commercials and whatever, but I wonder if they really know/understand the sexual overtones of such dance moves? Does a seven or eight year old kid even know where babies come from? (I first heard about that process on the playground in 3rd grade but didn't quite believe the story.)
posted by Oriole Adams at 12:57 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


I flinched and looked away more during the 45 seconds I watched of that awful video than I did during watching all of "Hostel". Terrible.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:57 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Ick.
posted by Jofus at 12:57 PM on May 12, 2010


I refuse to click those links because they have nothing to do with Lady Gaga.
posted by Afroblanco at 1:00 PM on May 12, 2010 [5 favorites]


Fungible, of course the little girls had no idea of the sexual aspect of it, but the parents and choreographers most certainly did.

When I was seven, we wore leotards with sleeves and sequins that, you know, covered up more than half our bodies. Not burlesque outfits.
posted by too bad you're not me at 1:01 PM on May 12, 2010


not all of us waste our time on reddit, you know.

I'd secretly hoped it had ended up here but got deleted.
posted by cashman at 1:03 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


It's...I...Seven year old girls. Red bras and panties and thigh highs.

Beyonce. Black leotard.

I understand this is subjective, but when children are dressed more provocatively than a pop star, something has gone very, very wrong.
posted by jnaps at 1:04 PM on May 12, 2010 [38 favorites]


I couldn't get ten seconds into it without finding it so abhorrent that I made a noise loud enough for coworkers to ask me what was wrong.

Why do we work so hard to sexualize children? Aren't there enough sexy adults to go around? WTF.
posted by davejay at 1:05 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Really really really creepy. WTF are the parents thinking?
posted by papercake at 1:07 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think not.
posted by everichon at 1:07 PM on May 12, 2010


not all of us waste our time on reddit, you know.

I'd secretly hoped it had ended up here but got deleted.


sorry. to my credit, I did hesitate many times before hitting 'post.' But the world has a right to know what our talented children are up to.

posted by Lutoslawski at 1:07 PM on May 12, 2010


Or, what papercake said.
posted by everichon at 1:08 PM on May 12, 2010


I understand this is subjective, but when children are dressed more provocatively than a pop star, something has gone very, very wrong.

You said it, boy howdy. My kids do dance recitals with teenagers who are dressed in full-body leotards and other stuff that isn't provocative in the slightest, and are still able to dance amazingly well and be really impressive and put on a good show.

too bad you're not mine, the kids at my kids' school still wear that sort of thing, This is not the norm. Please let this not be the norm. I mean, I'm in Los Angeles, where you'd think this is the norm, but it is not.

(sigh)
posted by davejay at 1:11 PM on May 12, 2010


Well, as a father, I've come to realize that just about every girl in America under 8 that saw that video decided that they just had to learn those moves. Even though it's one of the toughest fucking pieces of choreography in music video ever.

So chances are that these 7-year-olds just felt they had to bust out doing that shit, and they had little idea about the sexual aspect of it, and the parents mostly felt they couldn't help but encourage the enthusiasm of their children because that's what they're supposed to do, right?


If they wanna sing into their hairbrushes in front of their mirrors, that's fine with me. I was not-quite-10 when Madonna's first album came out; my favorite song on it was "Burning Up." My best friend choreographed a dance routine for her birthday slumber party.

We still weren't allowed to wear hypersexualized clothes in public (and her folks would'a killed us if they saw our dance routines, though we were only performing for each other.) You can encourage little girls to be enthusiastic without enabling utterly inappropriate behavior in public.

I thought this routine was disgusting.
posted by desuetude at 1:13 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


Jesus Christ....my dancewear at that age was a bumblebee costume (almost like this) and tap shoes. What the hell has happened??
posted by availablelight at 1:15 PM on May 12, 2010


Seven? No way. No way could those kids be seven. To do moves like that they'd have to have been learning and practicing them for a couple years at least, and that would put them at like... five... maybe four...

Kill me now.
posted by cereselle at 1:16 PM on May 12, 2010


I have a friend whose 8 year old dances competitively. They attend a dance school where the director is determined to keep things appropriate for the ages of the kids participating but my friend came back from a regional competition recently and told me that most of the groups were performing along the lines of the horrific video above - it seems to be part of the culture of competitive dance. So much for having kids be kids. To my mind it's sad for the obvious reasons and also for the paucity of imagination used by the choreographers since there are lots of amazingly creative things one can do without sexualizing children.
posted by leslies at 1:16 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


I am impressed by the dance skill of these little girls.

That said. WHAT THE HELL! Since when is it okay for a seven year old to put on lingerie and gyrate in front of a screaming crowd. It's bad enough that teenagers dance like this, but I am DISGUSTED when little girls do it. What happened to cute little dances with frilly tutus and a little decency. AND it's on the Internet for any child predator to see and enjoy.

I understand that girls who want to be Cheerleaders in Junior High and High School have to start dance and tumbling classes very early, but that doesn't mean that we need to have them dancing like little adults. There needs to be a line drawn.

As a mom, I would be livid if I'd paid hundreds of dollars for classes and costumes, then showed up at a competition or performance and saw my daughter dancing like that. I would not be sitting in the audience cheering like a drunk at a strip show. Honestly, as soon as I saw that costume I'd pull my daughter out of the program.

These little girls are probably having the time of their lives up on that stage and probably don't realize that their 'moves' have subtext. I blame the dance instructors and the parents for allowing it. They should be beat or brought up on charges.

No wonder twelve year olds think there is nothing wrong with 'sexting' they are probably the same ones taught to dance like this while they're still in Elementary School. How on earth are they supposed to learn that their bodies are something to be protected while they are being taught to 'shake their thang' on stages across America?

(I apologize for my spelling and grammar mistakes, I'm so angry I can't see straight.)
posted by TooFewShoes at 1:18 PM on May 12, 2010 [6 favorites]


One more thing:

Does a seven or eight year old kid even know where babies come from?

Some do. Mine do; they know what a uterus is, they know they were born from cesarian section, they've seen videos of themselves moving around before they were born. They know the difference between a vulva and a vagina. They think it's silly when people call reproductive organs by snames like "po-po". They even laugh at "It's uterUS, not uterYOU."

What they don't have any inkling of is the act itself, or the desires that drive people to do it. Obviously as they start to develop the latter, we'll teach them enough about the former to be safe (but not enough to spoil the fun.)

Meanwhile, the dancing and costumes in this video (when done by adults) is all about the desires and the act, both of which children at that age don't have the context to understand (except in cases of child abuse.) It is apples and oranges, really -- there are still places on this earth where the act of it and the result of it aren't known (locally) to be connected.
posted by davejay at 1:19 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


my friend came back from a regional competition recently and told me that most of the groups were performing along the lines of the horrific video above - it seems to be part of the culture of competitive dance.

Not shocking. Think about children's beauty pageants, and some of the things they wear. I've watched "Toddlers and Tiaras"- the girls in "age appropriate" outfits with minimal primping and preening win squat.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:19 PM on May 12, 2010


then at least in this case it's an empowering, tough feminity (set to "Single Ladies," probably the best "fuck you Mr. Man" song in years)

That song is empowering? Isn't this the song with the refrain "If you liked it than you should have put on a ring on it"? Nothing empowers women like reminding them that they are an "it" that men can own when they "put a ring on it."

Also, any parent that allowed their 7 yr-old daughter to (a) listen to this song, and (b) watch the video needs to have their heads examined. Seriously. "Acting up, drink in my cup." That's what I want a seven yr old listen to, songs about getting hammered in a club and allowing guys to "get up on [them]" solely for the purpose of making another guy jealous.

I'm through the entire first side of Metallica's Kill 'Em All and I haven't yet found lyrics quite as disturbing for young ears.
posted by Pastabagel at 1:19 PM on May 12, 2010 [4 favorites]


Let me rephrase to clarify:

"...both of which children at that age don't have the context to understand (except in cases of child abuse, but only as they -- sadly -- understand the mechanics, but not the desire or the context.)"
posted by davejay at 1:21 PM on May 12, 2010


I'd really like to hear from the parents what they thought about this.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 1:21 PM on May 12, 2010


I found this comment kind of funny:
Leaving the dancing out, it could have been more age appropriate were they not dressed like saloon prostitutes from the old west days. Try to picture it in cute matching sweat-style dance pants and tee-shirts.

The parents ought to be ashamed
Heh, they did look like something out of wild west saloon. And they could have kept their stomach's covered, just because it should have been obvious that a bunch of people would have a problem with it.

--

But that said, I really don't *get it*. If you put a toaster oven in an outfit like that, it obviously wouldn't be sexual, so why is a 7 year old in an outfit like that any more sexualized? I realize there are people who are turned on by kids, and there are probably people turned on by toaster ovens. But what does that have to do with what "normal" people think?

I've never seen this kind of thing as "sexualizing" because, really, there is nothing "sexual" about a 7 year old. Zero times anything is still zero.
posted by delmoi at 1:22 PM on May 12, 2010 [11 favorites]


Absolutely, no. NO!
posted by ericb at 1:22 PM on May 12, 2010


Also, any parent that allowed their 7 yr-old daughter to (a) listen to this song, and (b) watch the video needs to have their heads examined. Seriously.

How do you feel about kids who are allowed to listen to Tom Waits? Seriously. Mine do, and they love it, and I'm not sure whether to be proud of ashamed.
posted by davejay at 1:23 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


They seem to be at a kiddie dance competition, the kissin' cousin to the baby beauty pageant and only slightly less icky*.

Actually, this is at the World of Dance competition, which to me only makes it worse. The audience is there to see adults breakdance and such, and yet they cheer so loudly for this intensely creepy sexualization. It is impressive dancing for kids so young, but it's not the kind of dancing they should be doing, for chrissakes!
posted by Hargrimm at 1:25 PM on May 12, 2010


But that said, I really don't *get it*. If you put a toaster oven in an outfit like that, it obviously wouldn't be sexual, so why is a 7 year old in an outfit like that any more sexualized?

7 year olds are obviously more analogous to grown women than toasters are.
posted by Think_Long at 1:27 PM on May 12, 2010 [11 favorites]


Okaaaaay. So. This is burlesque, very explicitly, not disguised. And the way I see it, burlesque is pretty inescapably about the performer showing themselves off as a sexual being: nearly naked so you can see a healthy figure and blemish-free skin; demonstrations of flexibility, rhythm; movement that evokes the motions of sex, accompanied by sexually-tinged music and with an atmosphere of carnival and abandon. That's wonderful... in adults. In children? I do not want to watch that, and I find it very creepy and offputting that any professedly non-pedophilic adult would.
posted by Drexen at 1:27 PM on May 12, 2010


Ugh, I watched about 10 seconds before hitting the back button and going to find some eye disinfectant. How many government watch-lists did I get put on in that time?
posted by afx237vi at 1:28 PM on May 12, 2010


What I can not understand is what set of morals allowed this to happen.

How do you feel about kids who are allowed to listen to Tom Waits? Seriously. Mine do

Do you teach your 7 year old kids college level calculus? How about Newtonian physics? There are certain things that young minds are simply not prepared to absorb in their fullest. Human sexual interaction is hugely sophisticated and complex. I don't think Tom Waits is doing any serious damage to a deeper understanding of this later in life, even if he can't be fully appreciated until you are at least 35 years old (ime). This shit in this video is straight up child abuse for the sick "amusement" of the parents.
posted by victors at 1:28 PM on May 12, 2010


Okaaaaay. So. This is burlesque, very explicitly, not disguised. And the way I see it, burlesque is pretty inescapably about the performer showing themselves off as a sexual being: nearly naked so you can see a healthy figure and blemish-free skin; demonstrations of flexibility, rhythm; movement that evokes the motions of sex, accompanied by sexually-tinged music and with an atmosphere of carnival and abandon.

You got that?



... from that?



?
posted by mazola at 1:30 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


But that said, I really don't *get it*. If you put a toaster oven in an outfit like that, it obviously wouldn't be sexual, so why is a 7 year old in an outfit like that any more sexualized? I realize there are people who are turned on by kids, and there are probably people turned on by toaster ovens. But what does that have to do with what "normal" people think?

I've never seen this kind of thing as "sexualizing" because, really, there is nothing "sexual" about a 7 year old. Zero times anything is still zero.



So if they were nude...it would be like regular toasters dancing?
Sounds like a Disney sequence...
posted by stifford at 1:30 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


But that said, I really don't *get it*. If you put a toaster oven in an outfit like that, it obviously wouldn't be sexual, so why is a 7 year old in an outfit like that any more sexualized? I realize there are people who are turned on by kids, and there are probably people turned on by toaster ovens. But what does that have to do with what "normal" people think?

I've never seen this kind of thing as "sexualizing" because, really, there is nothing "sexual" about a 7 year old. Zero times anything is still zero.


As a parent, I'll say for me it boils down to three things:

1. There's a large age range between 7 and 18, and if they start doing stuff like this now, they'll think it is normal and age-appropriate and keep on doing it -- and as they move through the age range, more and more potential victimizers (near their age, and adults) will single them out because of it. So, seeing children this age doing this, I can only think: what is the upside of teaching them to do something in public that will significantly increase their odds of being victimized?

2. From a "danger" perspective, I rank it up there with giving your kids a beer at seven, and teaching them to ride their bike in traffic at seven, because in all three cases they're not fully equipped to understand the potential consequences of doing something normally considered "adult" (and remember, we consider these things "adult" because they have consequences that children cannot understand.) As a teenager who witnessed a seven-year-old get drunk at a party and attempt to sexually assault a teen girl before passing out, I have at least that anecdotal evidence that this sort of this does not end well.

3. There's a visceral response to seeing a pre-sexual child attempt to be sexual. For most people, that's disgust, because it's something we know is wrong. For a subset of the population, it's arousal. For the majority, additional disgust perhaps comes from our knowledge of the subset who would be aroused by this.
posted by davejay at 1:31 PM on May 12, 2010 [8 favorites]


That poor kid...If this is his grade school he's either just killed his chances with women until college or turned himself into a legend. The horrified/dumbfounded looks from the girls in the background suggest the former.

PAY ATTENTION NOW YOU DISAFFECTED TEEN GIRLS, THAT GUY IS GONNA ROCK. Trust me, I know what I'm talking about, I was once a disaffected teen girl myself. Thankfully the 1.2 million hits on his video is close enough to teen affirmation should the latter happen.
posted by eatdonuts at 1:31 PM on May 12, 2010


delmoi, what are you on about? Little girls = toasters? Is this some weird BSG commentary?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:32 PM on May 12, 2010 [4 favorites]


There are certain things that young minds are simply not prepared to absorb in their fullest.

This is, I think, the key phrase. Extremely well put, when it comes to the discussion of "adult" subjects and children.
posted by davejay at 1:33 PM on May 12, 2010


In related news: 7-year-old Samba Queen Causes Stir in Rio. Julia Lira.
posted by ericb at 1:34 PM on May 12, 2010


If you put a toaster oven in an outfit like that, it obviously wouldn't be sexual, so why is a 7 year old in an outfit like that any more sexualized?

Because -- generally speaking --a disturbing amount of people don't like to stick their genitalia inside of a toaster oven. And when they do, the toaster oven isn't completely fucked up for life.
posted by flarbuse at 1:34 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


... a disturbing amount of people don't like to stick their genitalia inside of a toaster oven. And when they do, the toaster oven isn't completely fucked up for life.

Yeah, it's pretty much the other way around.
posted by Nothing... and like it at 1:38 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


And when they do, the toaster oven isn't completely fucked up for life.

the toaster-fuckers sure are though.
posted by Think_Long at 1:38 PM on May 12, 2010


flarbuse: "And when they do, the toaster oven isn't completely fucked up for life."

To stand up for some folks I have known who were abused and are doing OK today (and to in no way stand up for abusers): yes sexual abuse of children is bad, wrong, harmful, and often very damaging. But some people do actually grow up to have a healthy sexuality that is not dominated by that experience.
posted by idiopath at 1:38 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


tag teamed!
posted by Think_Long at 1:38 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


IN YOUR FACE THINK_LONG
posted by Nothing... and like it at 1:38 PM on May 12, 2010


Does a seven or eight year old kid even know where babies come from? (I first heard about that process on the playground in 3rd grade but didn't quite believe the story.)
You can't be serious. Knowledge about this stuff is obvious not uniform. But at the same time, I don't think prepubescent kids really understand what a really strong sex drive is like.
Fungible, of course the little girls had no idea of the sexual aspect of it, but the parents and choreographers most certainly did.
Again, I don't really get that. Nothing in this video seemed "Sexual" to me at all. No more then if robots were doing these dances or something. But at the same time, it was obvious that some people would feel that way and be bothered, so I was cringing a little. But really I don't "get" how this is sexual.

And more then that, if you're used to seeing girls dancing all the time, this kind of thing might not have much of an impression on you. I can see how someone could miss it.
delmoi, what are you on about? Little girls = toasters? Is this some weird BSG commentary?
My point is that 7 year old girls aren't any more "sexual" or whatever then a toaster. I mean, I just don't get how you can look at a little girl and see her as "sexualized" any more then you could a robot or whatever.
posted by delmoi at 1:38 PM on May 12, 2010


My point is that 7 year old girls aren't any more "sexual" or whatever then a toaster. I mean, I just don't get how you can look at a little girl and see her as "sexualized" any more then you could a robot or whatever.

disingenuity thy name is delmoi
posted by Nothing... and like it at 1:39 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


*speechless*
posted by zarq at 1:42 PM on May 12, 2010


How do you feel about kids who are allowed to listen to Tom Waits? Seriously. Mine do, and they love it, and I'm not sure whether to be proud of ashamed.
posted by davejay at 4:23 PM on May 12


Is Tom Waits reinforcing the notion that women are property to be acquired by men through marriage? I'm guessing not, though I wouldn't want my kids listening to "The Heart of Saturday Night" or "Pasties and a G-String," so even with Tom Waits it's probably a judgment call you have to make on a case by case basis.

If you put a toaster oven in an outfit like that, it obviously wouldn't be sexual, so why is a 7 year old in an outfit like that any more sexualized?

Okay, well, two things here. One, the outfit itself is sexual. The outfit on the rack draws attention to the very body parts it covers even when there is no body or toaster in it. It's not a functional two piece outfit like underwear or a bikini for kids (if there is such a thing). It's lingerie. Kids shouldn't be wearing lingerie, right? Secondly, it isn't that outfit that's the real problem. It's that the dance routine itself is sexual in its pelvic thrusts, etc. You couple the overly sexualized dance routine with the lingerie outfit and you've got yourself quite perfect child services storm.
posted by Pastabagel at 1:42 PM on May 12, 2010


Little Nancy ended by saying," We were no longer little girls. We were dancing jail-baitters, advertising for the next available pedophile." The End?...of innocence!
posted by doctorschlock at 1:44 PM on May 12, 2010


My point is that 7 year old girls aren't any more "sexual" or whatever then a toaster. I mean, I just don't get how you can look at a little girl and see her as "sexualized" any more then you could a robot or whatever.

Again, what are you on about? You're not even close to addressing the reason why most people are squicked out by this. You're just telling us that you don't view seven year old girls as sex objects. Good for you? I guess? Is your parole officer reading this or something? Bizarre.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:44 PM on May 12, 2010 [8 favorites]


Yeah, if the kids were wearing sweat pants or something, it wouldn't be nearly so bad.
posted by empath at 1:46 PM on May 12, 2010


Fucking wrong. The dress, the song, the dancing style---WRONG.

Reminds me of a 4 year old's birthday party I just went to. She got an IPod and a bunch of Twighlight shit because teaching a 4 year old to have boyfriends, etc. is right in their eyes.
posted by stormpooper at 1:54 PM on May 12, 2010


disingenuity thy name is delmoi -- Nothing... and like it
What are you talking about? How is what I said disingenuous? Not everyone has the same experiences and responses as you do. If you put an 80 year old woman in an outfit like that, it wouldn't seem sexual. Why would any different with a 7 year old girl?
Okay, well, two things here. One, the outfit itself is sexual. -- Pastabagel
Well, that's very context dependent, isn't it? Someone who grew up in the middle east would find almost anything western women wear as "Sexual". Which was my point about someone who works in dance, and sees women wearing outfits like this all the time as part of their job, it wouldn't have the same impact.
Again, what are you on about? You're not even close to addressing the reason why most people are squicked out by this. You're just telling us that you don't view seven year old girls as sex objects. Good for you? I guess? -- (Arsenio) Hall and...
I'm saying that I don't really understand how anyone else could either. It's just bizarre to me. Is the problem the idea that a pedophile could see this and get turned on?

Look, I wouldn't have had the girls wearing this or anything, because I do know that it would bother some people.
Is your parole officer reading this or something? Bizarre. -- (Arsenio) Hall and...
What everyone who doesn't agree with you is a pedophile or something? That's classy.
posted by delmoi at 1:55 PM on May 12, 2010


i like the song. however, this video...well, .... ick.

i was unprepared for the outfits, even after reading all the comments.

beyonce and her dancers seriously had on more clothes than the girls in this thing and that is very much not hyperbole at all.

i am impressed with many of the moves the girls did, however, i think a responsible choreographer could have gotten rid of the pelvic thrusts and given them some different costumes.

the thing that makes it "ick" is that we ADULTS know what the song is about. as adults, we can laugh at the song, or enjoy dancing to it, or both. we have experience that makes the song make sense.

and that experience is pretty darn sexual in nature.
so seeing girls in saloon-prostitute costumes dancing to a song that we well and good know is about sex is just icky.

the idea isn't so much that we are sexualizing the girls, it's that an irresponsible adult didn't think this thru, and that apparently a lot of us here (and apparently not in attendance at the show) are making a connection between our own experiences with making a guy jealous at a club while drunk and these little girls dancing to that song.
posted by sio42 at 1:57 PM on May 12, 2010


Um, yeah. My first thought was that their skill is out of this world - they are doing technical dance moves that I hadn't mastered at 21 after 9 years of dance. I have no idea how they manage that.

And then I started getting seriously icked out by the pelvic-gyrations, the booby-thrusting, and the booty-shaking. It would border on vulgar in my mind for a teenager to be doing that - for elementary school kids it just isn't acceptable to me.
posted by tryniti at 1:57 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


delmoi: But that said, I really don't *get it*. If you put a toaster oven in an outfit like that, it obviously wouldn't be sexual, so why is a 7 year old in an outfit like that any more sexualized? I realize there are people who are turned on by kids, and there are probably people turned on by toaster ovens. But what does that have to do with what "normal" people think?

Actually, I get what you are trying to say: they are simply girls dancing to a popular song. On the surface, there is nothing to sexualize, or, put in another way, all the sexualizing happens in the mind of the viewer. In that context, fine, you have a point, one just needs to look at the performance simply as that: a show of little girls dancing, in a contextual vacuum, and there you have it, it's just an amazing piece of show(wo)manship, nothing to go all GRAR about. But as you probably know very well, such context-free viewing is probably not the first thing people would do, as we don't live in a vacuum, and the mind tends to try to find context to fit things, such as a performance like this, into.
posted by Anderson_Localized at 1:57 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


My point is that 7 year old girls aren't any more "sexual" or whatever then a toaster. I mean, I just don't get how you can look at a little girl and see her as "sexualized" any more then you could a robot or whatever.

Just because the girls are 7 doesn't mean that they're immune to sexualization. They're wearing lingerie which is clothing that people associate with sex. They're doing dance moves which seem appropriate for a dancefloor in a club, where people go to find people to have sex with.

Are toasters sexual? No.
Are 7-year-old girls sexual? No.
Is it sexualizing to put lingerie on a 7-year-old girl and then teach her a burlesque dance and then have her perform that dance? Yes.
posted by 23skidoo at 1:57 PM on May 12, 2010


And just to bring everything full circle: Sexy Toasters
posted by Atom Eyes at 1:59 PM on May 12, 2010


It seems like to participate in this thread, you need to start by saying you don't like this. So, I don't like this.

Having said that, this doesn't quite ring true to me:

davejay: "There's a visceral response to seeing a pre-sexual child attempt to be sexual. For most people, that's disgust, because it's something we know is wrong. For a subset of the population, it's arousal. For the majority, additional disgust perhaps comes from our knowledge of the subset who would be aroused by this."

Is this really what pedophiles like? That seems incorrect to me, on a few levels. Pedophiles don't grok normal sexual behaviors, so I don't think it's right to say they'd be set off by a child simulacrum of normal sexual behaviors.

Have you ever spent a disgusted afternoon reading Perverted Justice transcripts? One thing that becomes clear very quickly is that child predators don't like their prey acting flirtatious. They like their prey acting confused. They don't want their victims to be conspirators. They want Dora the Explorer, not Beyonce.

So yeah, fire whoever directed this, but it seems disingenuous to say it's literally putting the girls in danger. Strictly speaking, soccer jerseys with girls' names on them are more dangerous than fishnets.
posted by roll truck roll at 2:01 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


If anybody tries to put one of those outfits on my niece before she's twenty, i'm a gonna do some hurt.
posted by angrycat at 2:01 PM on May 12, 2010


My point is that 7 year old girls aren't any more "sexual" or whatever then a toaster. I mean, I just don't get how you can look at a little girl and see her as "sexualized" any more then you could a robot or whatever.

there are a couple reasons why I don't quite agree with you.

-irrational squicked emotions about things are normal. in your first comment about what "normal" people think, this seems to be forgotten. normal people get squicked out by 7 year olds being sexualized. which brings me to point "-"...
-even if not all of us realize what's immediately creepy about this, I'd be willing to bet that the largest part of the problem for most of us is not that these are sexual girls, it's that these are pre-sexual girls being sexualized. the former implies agency, the latter implies exploitation. who is exploiting them? dunno. maybe the parents, maybe the competition, maybe a combination of those two, maybe it's just a general societal thing where we are raising girls to perceive themselves sexually before they can fully understand what they're being perceived as and whether that's an image of themselves they'd like to present. which brings me to pont "-"...
-things like this hold a mirror up to us, as a culture, and ask if we like what we see. squicked out reactions may just be part of realizing that... not really, no, we don't like that. for myself, along with other things, I'm reminded that 7 year old girls are absolutely in the target demographic for sexualized imagery in music, magazines, tv and hollywood, by design. the demographic is skewed rather higher in age, but it still includes the girls who look at teenagers and think "that's what I need to be like" and see teenagers who are trying their best to act like grown women who have (one hopes) come to their decisions about presenting themselves to the world maturely. so seeing stuff like this is creepy, because it kinda draws a nice bright line along the path of modern marketing and culture and says "just so's ya know, this is how we got here."

it's not really about someone seeing 7 year olds and popping a boner or anything stupid like that. it's about seeing girls who don't understand what they're doing or why they see adults doing it acting in ways that present them in a way they could not possibly have intended.
posted by shmegegge at 2:04 PM on May 12, 2010 [5 favorites]


What everyone who doesn't agree with you is a pedophile or something? That's classy.

Nailed it. Everyone who disagrees with me is a pedophile. DID YOU HEAR THAT, EVERYBODY? ARGUE WITH ME AND YOU'RE A GRADE-A PEDO.

delmoi, I'll try to break it down real simple like. People have an issue with this footage because little girls dressed up in sexy-sexy costumes and gyrating like strippers is problematical for a number of reasons. None of those reasons include the following line of thinking: "gee, this footage makes me sexually attracted to those girls, therefore it's wrong." So your argument that this clip isn't a big deal because you specifically are not attracted to seven year old girls not only misses the target of our collective ire, it oddly singles you out as someone in the corner of the room, waving his hands, shouting "HEY BUT I DON'T THINK LITTLE GIRLS ARE SEXY AT ALL!" when nobody in the crowd has said anything of the sort.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 2:05 PM on May 12, 2010


I'm absolutely blown away by the talent these little girls have. I'm pretty freaked out by how sexy the dance and the costumes are. Inappropriate, cubed.

As I was watching, I wondered, "didn't parents see this? They must have, kids have to practice, they had to buy the costume, they probably watched the class. SO WHY DIDN'T SOMEONE STOP THIS???"

That said, the song is fine, even for young ears. I danced in the kitchen with one of the neighbor kids, age 4, to this song. We both had fun. Kids have a funny way of making the words conform to their understanding of the world. How many of us have been singing a song wrong for decades because we misunderstood the words? To this day I think the lyric is: I saw a wearwolf drinking a pina colada at Trader Vic's and his hair was purple.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 2:05 PM on May 12, 2010


It seems like to participate in this thread, you need to start by saying you don't like this.

That's the same rule for every MetaFilter thread.
posted by mazola at 2:06 PM on May 12, 2010 [10 favorites]


You know what really can't be missed in Pomono, Canada? The Muhammad portrait gallery.

Must see.
posted by Bonzai at 2:08 PM on May 12, 2010


My point is that 7 year old girls aren't any more "sexual" or whatever then a toaster. I mean, I just don't get how you can look at a little girl and see her as "sexualized" any more then you could a robot or whatever.

A robot is not going to become a sexual creature. A little girl is going to grow into a woman. So a little care in protecting her from the very complicated and often misguided world of adult sexuality before it's relevant is part of our responsibility as adults.

Dancing like this is inviting an audience of adults to applaud 7-year-old girls working the come-hither moves and acting like they have adult sexual desires. It's worse that the girls have only a half-formed idea of what they're indicating, it comes off as exploitative.
posted by desuetude at 2:09 PM on May 12, 2010 [6 favorites]


Is it sexualizing to put lingerie on a 7-year-old girl and then teach her a burlesque dance and then have her perform that dance? Yes.
I just see it as kids pretending to be adults, which is what they do. I don't mean they are trying to "pretend to be sexy", they are just doing the moves without understanding any of the sexual content.

Anyway, I don't have a problem with people who disagree with me, I would have had them wear more appropriate clothes because I do understand that it bothers people.

I just wanted to post because this thread was so one sided it was little ridiculous. Obviously a lot of people would be involved in putting on a competition like this and it sounds like these kinds of outfits are common:
I have a friend whose 8 year old dances competitively. They attend a dance school where the director is determined to keep things appropriate for the ages of the kids participating but my friend came back from a regional competition recently and told me that most of the groups were performing along the lines of the horrific video above - it seems to be part of the culture of competitive dance. So much for having kids be kids. To my mind it's sad for the obvious reasons and also for the paucity of imagination used by the choreographers since there are lots of amazingly creative things one can do without sexualizing children.
I don't think that the people putting these things on are all pedos, or think of what they are doing as "sexualizing" children.
posted by delmoi at 2:10 PM on May 12, 2010


(and after watching the video)

I'm not going to get into the graar pedobear shit but I gotta say "God damn! those girls brung it!"
posted by Bonzai at 2:11 PM on May 12, 2010


I may be alone in this, but I think that the issue is not whether someone is aroused. If a pedophile is someone aroused by imagery of children, to me that is just an unfortunate fetish, as long as they don't act on it (and unfortunate because it would be immoral to act on it).

I would be just as judgmental (if not moreso) of a person who sexually abused children and failed to find it arousing. The act is what matters.

People get turned on by any and everything under the sun. Being aroused or being squicked by any given thing is not a moral or immoral thing, it is a simple biological response.

Morality is about what we do, not what our biology responds to.
posted by idiopath at 2:12 PM on May 12, 2010 [4 favorites]


The girls are really talented dancers. The beat is easy to dance to and may have been picked for that reason.

BUT.

Those outfits! Good lord, the garishness. Delmoi, I understand what you are saying about them not being sexualized because you personally don't find little girls sexually appealing. I don't, either. Which is why it is ridiculous to dress them up in tiny sparkly bikini-style burlesque costumes. Of course they don't look sexy. They look absurd. These girls should be getting kudos for memorizing and performing a complicated dance sequences, but what's happening is we're all squicked out that someone, some adult, felt that these clothes and the makeup and all the rest was appropriate for this age group.

I don't know how the dance teacher decided on this, and why in the world the parents agreed. Maybe it is commonplace in the dance industry, just like tiaras and big hair are in the child beauty pageant world. But it's still ridiculously inappropriate to anyone who hasn't joined that kind of creepy subculture.
posted by misha at 2:12 PM on May 12, 2010


I don't think that the people putting these things on are all pedos, or think of what they are doing as "sexualizing" children.

Intentional fallacy.
posted by shakespeherian at 2:15 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


There are way more interesting discussions that we could have, but instead folks are just posting the equivalent of "ewwww." However, I do love that kid playing Lady Gaga— thanks for posting that!

What's the difference between this and kids imitating violence, and why is the latter more socially acceptable? With violence, there's a much bigger group of people saying "oh that's just harmless, they don't know what they're doing."
posted by anonymuk at 2:15 PM on May 12, 2010


Are there any dance groups with equally young boys doing equally "sexy" dances? Or is this something only girls are encouraged to do?
posted by pracowity at 2:16 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


I'm kind of with delmoi on this: I have a hard time seeing some of the things people are complaining about in this video, because it's just little kids doing a dance routine.

That being said, I stand by my eariler comment: it's creepy as hell, straight out of the uncanny valley --- the dancers obviously don't realize what they're doing, giving the whole thing a strange quality, sort of like watching robots programmed to mimic provocative human behavior.
posted by Dr Dracator at 2:16 PM on May 12, 2010


I clicked on the video, expecting to see some interesting, precocious choreography. I couldn't even watch more than 5-10 seconds of the video before I had to click away, I was so thoroughly unnerved by the costumes.

From what little I saw of the video, it was apparent that the girls were talented. But very few people are talking about that, are they? Whether or not you feel that these children are being sexualized or exploited (I personally do, but I see that others disagree), I feel we all can agree that the costumes are an unnecessary distraction.

Full stop. They steal the spotlight from the talent and hard work of these girls.

If the parents and the dance instructor really cared, they would've found costumes that complemented the routine, rather than ones that distracted from it. I was involved in competitive dance for 6 years as a child, and though my outfits veered towards the skimpy end of the spectrum, they definitely weren't this provocative.
posted by chara at 2:16 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


Is it sexualizing to put lingerie on a 7-year-old girl and then teach her a burlesque dance and then have her perform that dance? Yes.

I just see it as kids pretending to be adults, which is what they do. I don't mean they are trying to "pretend to be sexy", they are just doing the moves without understanding any of the sexual content.


Yeah, but this isn't some youtube vid of some kid who found mommy's lingerie and was dancing in her closet, this is a video of a dance troupe who are wearing clothes that were approved by an adult, and who are doing moves approved by adults. And adults know that there is a sexual context to the outfits and the clothes.

Just because the kids might not understand the sexual context behind what they're doing doesn't mean that they're not being sexualIZED (not sexy, not sexual, sexualIZED) when an adult says "Yeah, it's okay to wear those clothes and dance like that."
posted by 23skidoo at 2:18 PM on May 12, 2010


I just see it as kids pretending to be adults, which is what they do. I don't mean they are trying to "pretend to be sexy", they are just doing the moves without understanding any of the sexual content.

If they were pretending to be adults by dancing in replicas of mommy's business suit or waitress uniform or lab coat or whatever, that'd be a whole different ball of wax. They're not acting like "adults," they're acting like a sexualized fantasy of a woman. There's no context beyond being sexy here.
posted by desuetude at 2:18 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


While I get that this video is disturbing to some, it's equally as disturbing to imply that it's somehow the girls' fault if they get abused because of how they wear or how they move. It smacks of slut-shaming and victim-blaming. "Oh, of course they'll treat you like an object, look at what you're wearing!!". This rings especially true with roll truck roll's remark of how pedophiles go for children, not children-pretending-to-be-adults.
posted by divabat at 2:19 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Are there any dance groups with equally young boys doing equally "sexy" dances?

When this appeared elsewhere a while ago (in internet time), some linked young (6-10) male chippendale dancers - they have some kind of hinky malamanteau name.
posted by cashman at 2:20 PM on May 12, 2010


Ew.
posted by clvrmnky at 2:20 PM on May 12, 2010


What's the difference between this and kids imitating violence, and why is the latter more socially acceptable? With violence, there's a much bigger group of people saying "oh that's just harmless, they don't know what they're doing."
The thing is, though, that Children do understand violence and are capable of engaging in it. In the past, stories about schoolyard fights were pretty common. But I don't find kids pretending to get into fights as a big problem. It's just pretend. People should explain to kids the consequences of acting on their ideas, not preventing ideas from entering their heads.
posted by delmoi at 2:25 PM on May 12, 2010


divabat: "This rings especially true with roll truck roll's remark of how pedophiles go for children, not children-pretending-to-be-adults."

I read his comment much differently. I don't think anyone here is slut shaming these girls (unless I missed some justifiably deleted comments). This subject is touchy so I think it is best to give participants a bit of charity in our reading of their views. We have every reason to be hyper vigilant for the signs that someone is a secret predator or predator enabler but random accusations don't really seem to be the best way to productively discuss this issue.

This goes for some of the response to delmoi too I think.
posted by idiopath at 2:26 PM on May 12, 2010


And now I realize I probably misread your comment, divabat, my apologies if that is the case.
posted by idiopath at 2:27 PM on May 12, 2010


Holy shit, can we talk more about that Paparazzi kid? That was amazing.
posted by sevenyearlurk at 2:31 PM on May 12, 2010


Surprised no one has pointed out that this almost certainly inspired by the last chipmunk movie (url, I kid you not, www.munkyourself.com.) In case you missed the flick, you can see there the Chipettes (oh, the shame of it!) doing their thing on that site.

I can absolutely imagine these seven year old all-but-pole-dancers seeing this movie and thinking that it would be a gas to go in that direction and even alas, a bunch of enabling deranged adults backing them up. Hey, it's Disney, ain't it? (Well, no, actually it's 20th Century Fox, so draw your own conclusions. )

(I expect the cartoon video was not available when they were trying to learn the moves, but Beyonce probably was.)
posted by IndigoJones at 2:33 PM on May 12, 2010


i clicked on that expecting it to be cute little kid dance set to the song and instead was subjected to about 5 seconds (before i closed the window) of something very disturbing :(
posted by raw sugar at 2:35 PM on May 12, 2010


All the parents of all those girls were sufficiently okay with this to allow the performance to happen. More than once, I'm guessing. Now, I couldn't watch it. I have a daughter of the same age, and I cherish the fact that she's still at the "Yuck, boys" stage. She reads with expression and she plays the trumpet with some skill and she does neither of these things half-naked. Good swimmer too but she wears more in the pool than these girls do. Actually the amount of clothes are a red herring. It's the type and distribution of clothes that's wrong. Even if there were no such thing as paedophiles, dressing your child as a prostitute would still be distinctly iffy, I would humbly suggest
posted by tigrefacile at 2:35 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


divabat: "While I get that this video is disturbing to some, it's equally as disturbing to imply that it's somehow the girls' fault if they get abused because of how they wear or how they move. It smacks of slut-shaming and victim-blaming. "Oh, of course they'll treat you like an object, look at what you're wearing!!". This rings especially true with roll truck roll's remark of how pedophiles go for children, not children-pretending-to-be-adults."

What? How'd my comment do that?
posted by roll truck roll at 2:36 PM on May 12, 2010


Seems like the general reaction here is flat-out disapproval, and admittedly, I had the same initial impulse. But really, what's the problem? The dance moves seem sexual, but that's not the way the kids are thinking about it. They're just having a great time dancing. And yeah, they're dressed up in sexy costumes, but it's no more revealing than bathing suits. Nobody's forcing them into these costumes (I assume) - most likely, they chose them themselves, because they look cool. I understand that we're all uncomfortable with sexuality at a young age, but that's no reason to force kids away from doing anything they want just because we're reading it sexually.
posted by ankurd at 2:37 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


roll truck roll: that was my first response too - but now I think maybe she was actually saying that given what you said about real pedophiles actually being aroused by the idea of a bewildered victim, not an adult in a child's body, that the attention given to the pantomime and clothing was off the mark.
posted by idiopath at 2:38 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


ankurd, if this were something some kids had concocted on their own to entertain themselves, I'd (mostly) agree. But this is something else. I'm assuming this went through multiple layers of adult involvement, and someone really should have given it some rethinking.
posted by roll truck roll at 2:40 PM on May 12, 2010


Thanks, idiopath. My self-image as an awesome dude has been restored.
posted by roll truck roll at 2:41 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


Nobody's forcing them into these costumes (I assume) - most likely, they chose them themselves, because they look cool.

Assuming their dance program is like the trillions of dance programs both of my sisters have been in, the instructors picked the costumes.
posted by shakespeherian at 2:43 PM on May 12, 2010


So anyone else get the feeling watching the video that it might as well have come out of North Korea?
posted by PenDevil at 2:44 PM on May 12, 2010


My dog does it better.
posted by Jacqueline at 2:55 PM on May 12, 2010


Apparently "dazzling" does not mean what I thought it did.
posted by sanko at 3:01 PM on May 12, 2010


The dancing was great and admirable. Seven year olds shouldn't dress like hookers, though, maybe that's just me.
posted by zardoz at 3:04 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


A robot is not going to become a sexual creature....

Ah, but Adam Sandler disagrees [NSFW].
posted by ericb at 3:04 PM on May 12, 2010


I'm the father of a 5 year old girl, and this doesn't bother me. It's a bit aback-taking to see young kids doing things I don't expect young kids to be able to do. But otherwise, meh. That's what "hip hop" (or whatever) dancing looks like, and that's pretty much what the dancers wear (okay, maybe not olde timey burlesque clothes). If those girls are that into dancing - and clearly they are because they're amazing - I imagine that's pretty much the style and the outfits they're seeing when they watch other, older dancers/dance crews do their thing. So they want to do the same thing.

The difference between this and creepy toddler/tween beauty pageants is that pageants are explicitly about making the girls look like hyper-sexualized adults. By contrast, this is just, you know, dancing.
posted by schoolgirl report at 3:08 PM on May 12, 2010


I think the issue for me is that these girls appear in a world where abusers have (successfully) argued in court that their victim led them on. That it's her fault for being alluring. Teaching children the trappings and moves of being alluring and sexual but leaving them without any real education or emotional maturity to deal with the not insignificant portion of the adult populace that will take advantage of that is horrific.

I matured early. Stupid heinous early. I was perpetually sexualised from the moment I could accidentally mimic sexually alluring behaviour. Even though I was most definitely and obviously a child I also had breasts which meant there was only a short period where I was unsuspicious of friendly overtures from men and boys. There was only a short time where I could rely on 'child' as a protection from skeevy jokes and comments and looks. Only a short amount of time I didn't fear what men would say or do when I was around. To deliberately induce this in your child for the sake of a dance horrifies me. They are children and as such do not have the emotional maturity to deal with the fallout from people who insist 'she looked 18 your honour' or 'I didn't realise she was that young' or 'she started it' or 'she obviously wanted it'. Even just inappropriate comments you just don't get but still want to rip your own skin off and hide. Or rather, they will develop it, but at a price.

Shit like this happens on a continuum. Paedophilia does too. It isn't just bogeymen assaulting innocent little kids.
posted by geek anachronism at 3:09 PM on May 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


How do you feel about kids who are allowed to listen to Tom Waits? Seriously. Mine do, and they love it, and I'm not sure whether to be proud of ashamed.

I grew up listening to Phil Ochs, Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, and the Beatles. Sometimes the lyrics confused me, sometimes they upset me, sometimes they were an experience of true poetry. All of that was good, and none of it was bad, and I'm grateful to this day that I didn't ever deal with parental censorship. But the key word here is listening: I wasn't watching half-naked women in a nonstop sexual display, and I never grew up thinking that that was what dance was about.
posted by jokeefe at 3:12 PM on May 12, 2010


Holy shit, can we talk more about that Paparazzi kid? That was amazing.

His arc to fame is even more so-- the performance was what, at the very end of April? He's on Ellen on Thursday next week.
posted by jokeefe at 3:14 PM on May 12, 2010


Whoa.

Wow.

My daughter was once given a low cut, tight fitting red velvet shirt and was crushed that I would not let her wear it out of the house, at about age 8. She recently-age 19- saw a picture of herself vamping in it and said, "Wow, I can see why you wouldn't let me wear it."

Age is a good thing.

The girls in that video can bust a move alright, but their timing and synchronization is way off. That is because they are kids.

Would somebody tell their parents, please?
posted by SLC Mom at 3:17 PM on May 12, 2010


Strangely, I am not nearly as shocked or revolted as I probably should be. I was impressed by those girls' dance skills. As someone who was forced into dance class from a very early age, I don't honestly see what is so very different in what they are doing than much modern dance. At least, when I was that age, and I was parading around in dance costumes, that alright, were one piece, but otherwise not that different, I felt exposed. I was an overweight kid and I was embarrassed to go on stage dressed like that, but I had to because everyone else did. I definitely remember there being moves that we were taught that were a bit naughty, a bit sexual. Certainly the older kids were doing them and the teachers. Back then it was Madonna we were dancing to, and loving it probably as much as these girls are, but I'm pretty sure some adults might have found it objectionable. I'm not saying I support this, but I'm saying it's not exactly a new problem.
posted by threeturtles at 3:21 PM on May 12, 2010


The difference between this and creepy toddler/tween beauty pageants is that pageants are explicitly about making the girls look like hyper-sexualized adults.

Yeah, I'm gonna go ahead and say this is how these two things are very much alike.

Serves me right for hitting the link before reading the thread. Gah.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:25 PM on May 12, 2010


idiopath: "I am a permissive person and I think kink is great and everything should be sexy and we are all too embarrassed about sex but really the sexual attractiveness of seven year olds is one of those things that I am OK with treating as a taboo subject."

It's funny you say that, because I think the fewer taboos we have, the better. To me, a taboo is something that we are viscerally against but don't understand why we are against it. We wouldn't consider murder a taboo, because it's simply wrong. I don't feel comfortable watching this video but I'm also not comfortable with it being a "taboo" and everyone posting "yuck" because that doesn't make for a very good discussion.

roll truck roll: "ankurd, if this were something some kids had concocted on their own to entertain themselves, I'd (mostly) agree. But this is something else. I'm assuming this went through multiple layers of adult involvement, and someone really should have given it some rethinking."

Yes, I think this is why we're creeped out. The fact that there's an audience of adults makes it worse somehow.
posted by anonymuk at 3:25 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


My point is that 7 year old girls aren't any more "sexual" or whatever then a toaster. I mean, I just don't get how you can look at a little girl and see her as "sexualized" any more then you could a robot or whatever.

I think I figured out how to explain it to you, although I'm not sure why it isn't evident to you without explanation.

The type of clothes they're wearing, and the type of dance moves they're doing, did not spring forth into our society arbitrarily; they are the current state-of-the-art in clothing and dance moves expressly intended to titillate, to excite viewers into sufficient arousal to keep their attention. This isn't an arbitrary thing; from time immortal, the art of dance (and the clothes worth by dancers) has been honed to attract an audience, and eventually co-opted into the commercialized process of using sex and desire to sell things (in the case of music videos, to sell CDs and concert tickets.)

So, what we're seeing here (and reacting so strongly to) is this: pre-pubescent girls (whom, as you say, are not sexual at all) wearing clothes based on designs intended to titillate, and executing dance moves intended to titillate. Coupled with our natural biological repulsion to thinking of pre-pubescent children as sexual objects, you're going to get a level of cognitive dissonance that many, many people cannot deal with easily, and that has a strong emotional component.

To use your toaster example: if you put a picture of a toaster in pasties and a g-string onto a greeting card, many people would laugh. From a cognitive dissonance perspective, that laughter comes from a similar place, but we laugh because the disconnect has no emotional component (it is a toaster, after all.) When it comes to the overt sexualization of pre-pubescent children, however, there is a significant emotional component (noted above) and so you're going to get a reaction much stronger and more negative than laughter, like disgust.
posted by davejay at 3:28 PM on May 12, 2010 [4 favorites]


Seems like the general reaction here is flat-out disapproval, and admittedly, I had the same initial impulse. But really, what's the problem?

My problem with this is that those young girls were being celebrated (listen to that crowd) for doing some pretty adult dancing wearing skin tight revealing outfits. IMO that reinforces the idea that their bodies are something to be displayed or put on show.

How are these girls supposed to learn that their bodies are something to be protected and cherished? How are they supposed to feel when they are twelve years old and a boy is asking them to send 'sexy' pictures over the internet? They may just think that it's no big deal if they've been parading around on stage half naked since they were toddlers.

I remember what it was like to be that age. I have a daughter slightly older. I'm trying to teach her that her body is special. To respect herself by being choosy about what she shows and who she shows it too.

How are these girls supposed to learn healthy boundaries when the adults in their lives are letting them perform this way? If this was a competition the girls probably won an award, further reinforcing the idea that this was okay. I don't blame these girls at all. I blame their parents, the dance instructors, and the competition judges.
posted by TooFewShoes at 3:34 PM on May 12, 2010


That poor kid...If this is his grade school he's either just killed his chances with women until college or turned himself into a legend. The horrified/dumbfounded looks from the girls in the background suggest the former.

WHOAH. No. Definitely no. The latter. That was astounding.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:36 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


So, I've been heavily involved with a burlesque troupe for a while now. Some of the performers have kids, and when the venue allows for it (i.e., a theater rather than a nightclub), they often bring them to the shows. The kids are very unconcerned about seeing their moms wearing g-strings and pasties.

The troupe sometimes does longer burlesque shows with plots, as well as themed shows, etc. Occasionally, the idea of having the kids in the show in some capacity is floated -- for example, a recent production was "Alice in Chinatown", and for a while they seriously considered asking a couple of the kids if they wanted to play Oysters during a recitation of "The Walrus and the Carpenter". It ended up not happening because the concept of the scene changed, but no one thought it would be a horrible idea.

I cannot think of a single member of the troupe who would not think that the costuming the kids in the video above were wearing was *totally* inappropriate. What the hell were the adults involved thinking?
posted by kyrademon at 3:41 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


Very good dancings. Shame about the perviness. Am I the first in the thread to think so?
posted by Lleyam at 3:46 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


This is eerily similar to the scene in Mean Girls when Regina George's little sister demonstrates how effectively her milkshake bringing all the boys to the yard. Is it the same in Little Miss Sunshine?
posted by tantivy at 3:59 PM on May 12, 2010


The real problem is that adults are helpless to control themselves when faced with provocative dress. HAMBURGER.
posted by idiopath at 4:02 PM on May 12, 2010


you're going to get a level of cognitive dissonance that many, many people cannot deal with easily, and that has a strong emotional component.

Thanks davejay for the good summary. I think cognitive dissonance is the factor responsible for most of the "ew" and "ick" responses above.

As anecdotal evidence, most people I work with (university @ mainland Europe) are reacting like, "meh, these girls have technique they're not on sync" and then as a second separate reaction "ahah, probably people in the states will not be able to deal with this video, because of the weird attitude to sexual development there".

Morals are constructed and can be reasoned with. No need to feel bad about these girls; they are probably enjoying themselves and there is no sex in there for them, nor for their instructors, nor for their parents, nor probably for their audience on that day.

Not long ago little girls where separated from boys at school to defend "morals". Male instructors where not allowed to teach girls ("morals", again). All this because the parents were projecting irrationally their own perception of risk factors onto the children. Then as the new generation grows up, the risks are shifted away and "morals" evolve.

Here, by the time these girls will grow up, the outfit we see now will have lost its sexual value. They will be able to look back in time at their performance and say "woah, that was something, we did get to shake mentalities at that show", and they will have something to be proud of.
posted by knz at 4:07 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


The kids are very unconcerned about seeing their moms wearing g-strings and pasties.

This creeps me out as much as the video does.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 4:08 PM on May 12, 2010


The 'paparazzi kid' has a bunch more covers and original songs on his YouTube channel. Talented fella!
posted by Drexen at 4:09 PM on May 12, 2010


Funny, I saw this post and was reminded of a video a friend of mine posted to facebook about 5 hours back with three 7 year olds dancing to My Boyfriend's Back. Her reaction was basically Ew!!!

So once I saw this video I posted the link to her in reply, not having watched the video she posted, but sort of as 'I see your video ick, and raise you this one'. And then I watched the one she posted.

Maybe I'm seeing things, but I think it's some of the same freaking kids.

At least their dance studio is consistent?
posted by aclevername at 4:13 PM on May 12, 2010


1. I watched it.
2. I feel dirty.
3. They're not really 7 year olds, are they? No 7 year old moves like that.
4. Did I mention I feel dirty?
posted by menschlich at 4:16 PM on May 12, 2010


As a dancer, I noticed the technique more than the sexuality. There were a couple thrusty bits that I found crossed the lines, but I suspect many of the people who are outraged over this have never been to a dance competition. It's not that unusual.

That said, I think the sexualization is detracting from their skill. It was a bad choice on the part of the choreographer.
posted by chatongriffes at 4:23 PM on May 12, 2010


* Dateline's To Catch A Predator crew bursts into Metafilter *

STONE PHILIPS: So, there you were, on YouTube. Just out for some innocent fun? Watching seven year olds cavort in revealing outfits?

everichon: I thought there would be a Lady Gaga-stylee detournement at some point! * Lurches for screen door *
posted by everichon at 4:25 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


Well, I am not horribly horrified. At what point between 7 and 18 are women supposed to learn to be sexual? Because it seems like we're supposed to just spring up, fully formed, at 16, maybe 17, and know how to be sexy. But any kind of sexual thing before then is AGRRRHGHH NOOOOOOO you're tempting the pedophiles!
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 4:27 PM on May 12, 2010 [5 favorites]


This is sick.

That being said, I wish I had been there.

I would have rushed to the edge of the stage and started waving dollar bills above my head like a freaking maniac just to see how many of the people who thought this was okay would be upset at me for taking it to it's logical conclusion.

Plus, I might have gotten lucky...




..and not been killed for doing so.

(I'll bet some of you were thinking something else there for just a sec, right? Now get your mind out of the gutter...
posted by Quasimike at 4:38 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


internet fraud detective squad, station number 9: "At what point between 7 and 18 are women supposed to learn to be sexual? Because it seems like we're supposed to just spring up, fully formed, at 16, maybe 17, and know how to be sexy."

Some African dance is explicitly about teaching girls to be sexy. I taught one year at a fine arts summer program, and one of the other teachers was an expert in such dance. The performance the kids put on was quite good, if (to me) a little weird. The weirdest thing was that there were some parts where the boys weren't dancing at all, just watching their girl partners and nodding the heads to the music.

I guess the more I think about this, the more I wonder if dance like this is being used as a catalyst for discussions about sexuality.
posted by roll truck roll at 4:40 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


At what point between 7 and 18 are women supposed to learn to be sexual?

On their own schedule. And "learning to be sexual" doesn't mean "learn to dance like a stripper". [NOT STRIPPER-IST]
posted by jokeefe at 4:40 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


The type of clothes they're wearing, and the type of dance moves they're doing, did not spring forth into our society arbitrarily; they are the current state-of-the-art in clothing and dance moves expressly intended to titillate, to excite viewers into sufficient arousal to keep their attention.
Yeah, maybe this is where the difference is. I don't really think of those outfits as being "sexual" overall. If I saw adult women doing this dance, I wouldn't think of it as overly sexual. It would just be a dance. Dancers wear outfits that are as revealing all the time, and I don't think of it all as being all that sexual.

While it's true that those moves and outfits originally were designed to be sexual, I think that over time they've lost that power and become commonplace. Just as a woman with her hair uncovered would be sexual to someone from Saudi Arabia, but not here. Wearing a miniskirt would seem intrinsically sexual to someone from the Victorian era.

just wearing a two piece and dancing isn't something that strikes me as intrinsically sexual either. I suppose it could be, but it's obviously not the intension here.

So I guess it could be possible for a 7 year old to be "sexualized" but I don't really think this rises to that level.

And the point I was trying to make is that "These kids are sexualized" is not a universal response to this dance and that Therefore it's possible, and I think likely that it wasn't the intention of the parents or the people involved with this competition.
posted by delmoi at 5:00 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


I guess the more I think about this, the more I wonder if dance like this is being used as a catalyst for discussions about sexuality.

Unlikely. The dances you're describing are apparently choreographed and performed as a deliberate means of addressing female sexuality. There's a widespread cultural understanding of what's going on, one that everyone watching has seen before and interprets in a specific way.

That's not the case here.

I have no idea why the choreographer chose and the parents approved these particular costumes. But I'm certain they weren't aiming for a semiotic analysis of gender and sexual signifiers in contemporary American society.
posted by dogrose at 5:09 PM on May 12, 2010


*watching and participating*
posted by dogrose at 5:10 PM on May 12, 2010


I'll add my name to the minority that doesn't really see anything outrage-worthy in this video. The kids are clearly well-trained dancers, it's a dance competition, and they used an extremely popular song. It's nothing that unusual. As an aside, I am always annoyed by the argument that a pedophile might get off on something as a reason not to do it (photos of kids in the bathtub, etc.). Do people really figure a pedophile's potential thought processes so much into their daily lives? That's crazy.
posted by ghost dance beat at 5:16 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


Where is Hobo with a Shotgun when you need him.
posted by Mr_Zero at 5:37 PM on May 12, 2010


I found this to be all kinds of wrong, mostly for the costumes rather than the moves, some of which struck me initially as more gymnastic than sexual (until the booty shaking that is).

I doubt anyone shot video of the oh so proud parents in the audience, but I'd bet money their expressions were ecstatic instead of embarrassed. I can't imagine my innocent little niece gyrating like that; it would disturb me to no end.

davejay: "Also, any parent that allowed their 7 yr-old daughter to (a) listen to this song, and (b) watch the video needs to have their heads examined. Seriously.

How do you feel about kids who are allowed to listen to Tom Waits? Seriously. Mine do, and they love it, and I'm not sure whether to be proud of ashamed.
"

Come down off the cross
We can use the wood
Come on up to the house
posted by bwg at 5:41 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Whoa... and I thought JonBenét Ramsey in adult drag was disturbing...
posted by kinnakeet at 5:42 PM on May 12, 2010


the thing that makes me say ew is that they could have done the same amazing routine minus the pelvic thrusts and semi nude costumes.

another thing is that the audience is stimulated by their performance, including the deliberately sexual aspects of this

and the girls would have in their heads: putting sex on offer = lots of admiring attention.

i had a hard time getting my head around that at age 18 (i.e., dealing with attention related to sex) I can't imagine someone dealing with that at age 7
posted by angrycat at 5:42 PM on May 12, 2010


The have the moves and amazing skills but

NO

and once again

NO!

No one should ever see a child put their hand behind their head and thrust their crotch repeatedly. Anyone who makes a child do this (even in an 'artistic' sense) needs to be smashed in the face. If a man had choreographed this no one would be happy with it.

FUCK THIS.
posted by AzzaMcKazza at 5:43 PM on May 12, 2010


I'd like this a lot better if the kids were dancing to Pomplamoose's cover of this song, and the choreography consisted of the girls just doing Nataly's signature dance move, the thousand-yard stare.
posted by emelenjr at 5:44 PM on May 12, 2010 [5 favorites]


Oh won't someone please think of the children.
posted by clarknova at 5:48 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Jesus, what the fuck did I just watch?
posted by nola at 6:07 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Well, I am not horribly horrified. At what point between 7 and 18 are women supposed to learn to be sexual? Because it seems like we're supposed to just spring up, fully formed, at 16, maybe 17, and know how to be sexy. But any kind of sexual thing before then is AGRRRHGHH NOOOOOOO you're tempting the pedophiles!

I am fairly horrified by the "public performance for adults" element of the video and the probable rabid stage-parenting behind it, but the idea that children are somehow asexual until puberty hits at age 12 is ridiculous. No, they don't have adult sexuality or comprehension, but they certainly have vague or not-so-vague sexual-ish impulses and sensations. At least I did by age 6 or 7, and that was in the 1960s when the pop culture I was exposed to was tame by comparison to Beyonce. Many of my friends who are parents find themselves having the "yes, touching your penis/vulva is nice, but we do that in private, not in the living room or supermarket" conversation with their 4 and 5 year olds.

Little kids acting out all sorts of grown-up stuff among themselves in childish ways as part of play is perfectly normal and innocent. But this thing is about as appropriate as a kindergarten production of Rocky Horror.
posted by FelliniBlank at 6:30 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


I danced for about 11 years, and at no point in that span did I ever wear a costume as skimpy as this. There are plenty of dance costumes out there that would show off the movements just as well without baring everything from soup to nuts. Putting little girls into itsy-bitsy costumes is just another way of provoking a response, which is a shame because all those girls are great dancers, and instead of watching them dance, too many people will be watching the costume.
posted by Never teh Bride at 6:33 PM on May 12, 2010


Many people are pointing out that dance moves like this are commonplace in studios and competitions; I'd like to point out that something being commonplace doesn't mean it's appropriate, it just makes it commonplace and possibly less shocking for those who are used to it.
posted by too bad you're not me at 6:42 PM on May 12, 2010


I don't exactly have outrage filter going on. I think the girls themselves did a great job. I just think their costumer and choreographer went a little nuts.

Beyonce wears this when she dances. The chipmunk girls wear this. I don't know who came up with black and red bikinis, but ewww.

And the overtly sexy moves could easily have been toned down and still been awesome, with their dance talent.
posted by misha at 7:46 PM on May 12, 2010


wrong wrong wrong. i couldn't watch five seconds.
posted by geekhorde at 7:53 PM on May 12, 2010


It's amzing to see how the standards for child performing have changed over the years. I watched some Shirley Temple films awhile back, and couldn't get over how unpolished she seemed compared to the child stars of today, who are basically just little adults (whether little sluts, little slobs, little type-As). Can you imagine her doing this dance? Neither can I.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:59 PM on May 12, 2010


geekhorde: yup, me too. just plain creepy.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 8:34 PM on May 12, 2010


It's amzing to see how the standards for child performing have changed over the years.

It also seems that the standards have (obviously, of course) changed for older performers too. As if age 23 is the standard that both the older and younger need to aspire to and women and girls aren't allowed to be their age.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:37 PM on May 12, 2010


"If you put an 80 year old woman in an outfit like that, it wouldn't seem sexual." -- delmoi

On the contrary... it wouldn't be a turn on for most of us, but it would definitely still come off as sexual. But maybe that's part of the problem, is that there's an aesthetic recoil that leaves us scrambling for objective reasons why this is immoral. But even if many of the reactions here have come off as a knee jerk response to the sheer creepiness of it all, that's not to say it's not ethically problematic in terms of the parents who encouraged this act, bought the costumes, etc... their movements and attire were clearly meant to represent female sexuality, I'm not sure it's relevant whether they successfully turned anyone on or not.

But for the record, if I wandered into a dance competition and saw 80 year old women scantily clad and gyrating for all their hip replacements were worth I would feel the exact same mixture of nausea and the sense that someone should be ashamed of themselves, I just wouldn't need the authority proxy for the latter part of it.
posted by squeakyfromme at 10:06 PM on May 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


Powderfinger have a whole filmclip of kids pretending to be adults, doing adult things. The clip includes band member look-a-likes.

There's a million in-jokes there - a few maybe only Aussies will understand. Check the hilarious drug deal at 2:05.

http://www.movideo.tv/videooftheday/1222783200000/clipdate_desc/18914/Powderfinger-I-Don't-Remember
posted by uncanny hengeman at 10:59 PM on May 12, 2010 [2 favorites]


You know what, I watched most of it. And yeah, those little gals worked their butts off.

The outfits, ugh. Yeah, Beyonce wore more clothes.

My take is that these little gals still have little baby pot bellies. And they should at that age. No way should they be doing that wiggle and grind. My daughter is almost 12 now and I wouldn't be ok with her doing that. In the kitchen with me is one thing... out in public is another.
posted by lilywing13 at 11:16 PM on May 12, 2010


I just watched the video and it was shockingly tame. The outfits were a bit ridiculous, but much more modest than what I was expecting from the tone of this thread. None of the dance moves were overtly sexual unless you think that any pelvic movement equals sex. I was expecting hip hop video style booty clapping to be going on.

The fact that metafilter finds this video to be the equal to the holocaust a lot creepier than the video itself.
posted by afu at 12:31 AM on May 13, 2010


Europeans find it hard to understand why they can be deported for making an office joke with consenting adults about tits, in a country for which (cultured MeFi reaction notwithstanding) this is a valid expression of its culture. What's going on?
posted by falcon at 12:33 AM on May 13, 2010


I just watched the video and it was shockingly tame. The outfits were a bit ridiculous, but much more modest than what I was expecting from the tone of this thread. None of the dance moves were overtly sexual unless you think that any pelvic movement equals sex. I was expecting hip hop video style booty clapping to be going on.

The fact that metafilter finds this video to be the equal to the holocaust a lot creepier than the video itself.


Yep, I'm pretty much with this comment. Given the hysteria I've read I was at least expecting the ass-slapping as per the original clip. My over riding feelings were a] bloody hell, these girls are good; and b] bloody hell, these girls are having a blast!

So how's that feminism going for you, ladies? Need another 40 years to get things sorted?
posted by uncanny hengeman at 12:57 AM on May 13, 2010


Having just attended a dance festival, I am impressed by the dance moves, however imperfect were the syncing and occasional balance problems. Sexualization? Excuse me, what do you think dance is about, most of the time?

"Itsy Bitsy costumes"? Excuse me, I don't think those words mean what you think. Even in the 60's, little girls wore bathing suits with less fabric than those dance costumes. I didn't like the costumes, but the scanty nature wasn't why.

Those girls did a very vigourous dance, under lights. I'm sure you prudes would have been happier seeing this under less professional (cooler) lighting, or having the girls all pass out from heat exhaustion, in order not to step on your victorian morals. Tough shit. Get over yourselves.

The moves themselves, well, yea, I saw what you saw. But it's dance. These girls aren't playing-in-the-kitchen dancing. They aren't pretending. They are learning dance, and god bless us, one and all, thankyou Jesus. Dance is one of the most beautiful things humans do. What a pity that a dancers professional life is so limited, for such crapy amounts of pay.

Performing is part of learning to be a dancer. They performed. They were cheered. Why can't they simply being awarded their applause in the ordinary way? Why must even the cheers be somehow sexualized in your minds? Is it not possible that your insistence on being so squicked is something happening in your head, and not something happening in that video?

I see plenty of emotion in the thread. But not a lot of reason. Oh, wait. Reason is SO last millennium. Now we judge things on our gut reaction. Never mind.
posted by Goofyy at 1:33 AM on May 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


You know, I'm really skeezed out by very young girls in beauty pageants, for a lot of the reasons listed here. I'm SO sympathetic to all that and I agree with tons of the arguments that have been made. If this was a thread about beauty pageants I wouldn't think twice.

But somehow, after the first several seconds of this, I just thought, "This is awesome." I even thought the outfits worked once the video ended, which seems so arbitrary. I can't for the life of me figure out why I'm not more bothered by it. It seems that for me, maybe sheer level of skill or fierceness is enough to overwhelm the other stuff, at least on a knee-jerk level. But I'm not sure. Now I'm sitting here wondering if I would be less skeezed out by beauty pageants if the girls involved didn't seem so fake, or actually seemed to be having a lot of fun, or if they didn't have to present such bland personalities, or something... which actually doesn't seem to have a lot to do with skill level, but something else.

To be clear, I'm not saying that's actually why I dislike beauty pageants -- though maybe that's ultimately why, I can't tell -- because all the old arguments still seem rational to me. I'm honestly puzzled, now, about my emotional reaction, and that's odd for me because usually I can articulate why I feel the way I do. I genuinely loved that video once I got over my initial surprise. So, if you will, this isn't so much me making hard and fast rational arguments as me trying to tease out the reasons for my emotional reaction. And it definitely isn't me telling anyone they're wrong to be skeezed out. I feel that.

I'm going through hypothetical alternative performances in my head and seeing how I would feel about those. The results are weird. I think I'd be more bothered by, say, a girl singing an old school "innocent" Britney Spears ballad, even if she was really good, which means perhaps it's not so much about the skill involved. When I think about why, it's because to me, Britney Spears ballads are all about presenting some version of female sexuality that seems false and focus grouped off what they thought men want. That's not something I want any girl learning, and it depresses me to see how soon that passive kind of sexuality is indoctrinated into girls; girls learn that it's important for others to want them sexually. Whether they're ready for that is irrelevant, they must do it anyway, or they're made to feel like ugly, unlovable failures. I hate seeing little girls that have already internalized that. It says little about wanting anyone yourself, except that if you do you're supposed to act coy and struggle with it because it's bad to embrace it.

Now, arguably the Single Ladies performance also teaches girls it's important that others want them sexually, but it's different in a few ways. It calls to mind the idea brought up earlier in this thread, that girls that young don't really understand the sexuality they're taught to project. That early-Britney-Spears kind of disingenuous, tentative sexuality seems worse to me than a more in-control, blatant sexuality for that reason: assuming you don't understand the implications of sexuality either way, being taught that you can be in control and you're not playing off someone else's cues is at least marginally better than being taught that you're expected to be a reactionary and passive sexual object whose butterfly-fragile psyche is hypervulnerable to a man's approval. It seems somewhat less dangerous for the girls themselves, though perhaps counterintuitive if you only think of it from the perspective of blatant sexuality attracting more predators. Even then, I'm not sure that's the case; I have a vague recollection of predators preferring to target those whom they think will cede control to them or be more easily pressured into things, but it's only a vague recollection so perhaps I'm wrong. Insofar as dealing with sexual pressure from non-predatory males roughly their own age as they grow up, though, I think the Britney Spears-influenced perspective would cause more girls to get pressured into something they weren't comfortable doing, and that seems like a far more universal experience than being molested than a pedophile. (I hope no one reads that as my downplaying the significance or prevalence of pedophilia, because I don't mean it that way.) Possibly the Singles Ladies kind of message could lead to some girls feeling like they have to have a more sexually-controlling persona than they're comfortable with, which is also problematic; I'm already uncomfortable that some women feel pressured to act like sex is no big deal when they personally feel it is, or are called a prude if they don't have enough sex, etc. Both messages are going to have dysfunctional extremes, and I guess I slightly prefer the one where women are encouraged to be active rather than passive.

Then I think, okay, what if the dancers had done some edgier Britney Spears dance song, one of her later ones, something that would have had some similar dance moves, but wore something more age-appropriate? That gets the worst visceral reaction from me, though, like it tells them not only should they emulate someone's else's simpering kind of sexuality, but they can't even do it in an unstifled way -- it's like saying, here, take this idea of how it's bad for girls to be blatantly sexual, but then don't even do much with that either. Wear this, do this edgy move or two because it's what you're supposed to do, but you can't do anything that isn't by this precise script -- your sexuality must be meted out to our precise specifications based on what other people want from you, and it will be carefully monitored. To be clear, they're 7, so I'm not saying they ought to be emulating sexuality one way or other. But for whatever slippery slope reason, girls dance groups do borderline edgy stuff all the time -- just one or two shocking moves overall and costumes that cover somewhat more than these did -- and while it gets some grumbles it doesn't garner the kind of outrage this video does. It seems likely that the "borderline" stuff is probably here to stay. But if it's a choice between the borderline stuff and this, the borderline stuff depresses me more.

And yeah, that seems to be a problem I have with beauty pageants, too. No one seems genuine or in control in a beauty pageant. It's all about being more than you're ready to be based on what other people want you to be. It's not that all the other arguments against them aren't valid, but my actual visceral reaction, that depressed feeling, seems to come from seeing those girls not only pushed into being sexual, but being completely restricted in that sexuality too.

So as far as analyzing my feelings goes, this seems on track.

The contrast to me seems to be this: they were able to genuinely put some personality into Single Ladies, and it was a strong kind of sexuality instead of the coy, passive version of sexuality that would have skirted the line and been more accepted by people. I realize there's an argument to be made that emulating Beyonce doesn't involve any more personality or individual expression than emulating Britney Spears. I guess all I can say is my impression watching the video is that I disagree, at least in this particular instance. I didn't get the impression that they had a ton of constraints put on them and usually it seems fake-y when kids try to be fierce. So compared to the depressing passive stuff I'm used to seeing young girls yoked into, this felt refreshing. That it felt refreshing to me in comparison is perhaps indicative of the overall sad state of affairs -- I wouldn't argue with that. In a choice between this performance and something passive, I choose this. In a choice between this or not being sexualized at all, I'd choose not being sexualized at all.

So that seems to explain why I felt it was "awesome": I'm subconsciously resigned to girls doing edgy, sexualized performances, so when they were really good and it wasn't the same depressing passivity I've come to expect, my heart leapt at what they weren't doing. It feels, in some weird way to me, like progress -- it's just not that simple when you actually think about it.

And just so it's clear, I'm not going to argue that OMG, the ~real~ reason people hate this is because society can only handle a passive oppressive vision of female sexuality, it bothers them to see any female in control! I think it bothers people for exactly the reasons people have already stated: they worry about it sexualizing young girls when they ought not to be sexualized, they worry about it making them a victim of predators, and all those other sincere concerns for their well-being. I assume that everyone making those arguments has a perfectly liberated view of adult female sexuality and I agree with them that it's depressing that young girls get embroiled with sexuality before they're ready for it. What I am saying, though, is that I see this as less harmful than the duplicity of the message that girls get now, which amounts to "be sexual enough that people like you, but oh shit, don't be THAT sexual, or sexual in the wrong way -- then everyone will ridicule you."

The ideal solution would be to shield them from those messages and the sexualization altogether. I just don't know that it's possible: even in the absence of the media influencing this sort of thing, young girls have been aware of society's sexual expectations of women for thousands of years -- young girls are even less sexualized today than they were in the past in a lot of ways; it was once far more commonplace to marry them off at puberty or right before. And kids always look to adults for the way they ought to act so you can't completely shut them off from society's influence. You can't count on adults to quit orchestrating this sort of thing either, because edgy stuff wins competitions, and once you go edgy, it's like an edginess arms race and we end up where we are. There's always going to be adults with poor judgment about what's appropriate in these kinds of competitions, too, so even if they know not to be "too sexual" they have a different idea of what that means. A first stab at progress is to at least take the element of shame and passivity out of feminine sexuality -- and then maybe you get seven year olds doing performances like this and it's weird. Things would have to just be less sexualized overall, but society hasn't been great at making things less sexualized without making people -- especially women -- feel ashamed about sex, so I'm at a loss for what steps are next. Perhaps we'll just get burnt out or desensitized to the extent that it's no longer so fraught: if society gives men and women dumb expectations, maybe it'll at least start to seem less imperative to be exactly what society wants -- maybe all we can do is just keep calling people out for being judgmental, and keep telling people that a wide variety of behaviors are acceptable and desirable to different kinds of people. Maybe we should try harder to make that what society wants. Sometimes I feel like maybe we're reaching that point, but maybe I spend too much time around AskMeFi.

I dunno, it's 2AM and I'm out of ideas. Someone else figure out the answer while I'm asleep. I'll expect your report on my desk in the morning.
posted by Nattie at 2:01 AM on May 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


Nattie: The contrast to me seems to be this: they were able to genuinely put some personality into Single Ladies, and it was a strong kind of sexuality instead of the coy, passive version of sexuality that would have skirted the line and been more accepted by people.

If Single Ladies is strong independent sexuality then we're all fucking doomed. It's the same pop bullshit. Seriously. We can make these stupid little deals of 'oh they're just so threatened by strong sexuality' but it doesn't negate the fact that there is a whole society out there judging these little girls by the signals they're sending that they don't have the emotional capability to understand or moderate. For every 'aw, yay dance!' and 'work it' and 'that's great technical proficiency' there's a 7/8/9 year old having some skeezy fuck ask her what she does with her boyfriend when they're alone. There's some douche telling a judge the 12 asked for it/looked older. There's a 10 year old feeling like she needs to have a boyfriend.
posted by geek anachronism at 2:22 AM on May 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


After giving it a pause over half a day, re-reading the comments and watching the video again, I've softened my stance a bit.

I like the energy the kids put into the show, and as I've mentioned a lot of the moves were athletic or gymnastic, which is not easy to pull off when you're still uncoordinated, to say nothing of the speed at which they were moving.

I wasn't quite as squicked out as during my first viewing, but that last bit at 1.40 still smacks me as too sexual for such young girls; whether they're aware of the sexuality is irrelevant. However, it seemed to me the cheers from the audience are clearly for the effort and intensity, not a reward for flaunting their bodies.

What matters most is who's watching; unfortunately there's no way to know who in the crowd might be a pedophile. Here's the thing: if it feels sexualised to us, even in the slightest, you know that a pederast is going to take what he sees to the extreme.

I can't help but wonder if any of those girls is now a target.
posted by bwg at 4:21 AM on May 13, 2010


"What matters most is who's watching; unfortunately there's no way to know who in the crowd might be a pedophile."

... What?

Seriously, I am baffled at how this is in any way relevant to the discussion.

You honestly think it is a rational worry that someone in the audience is going to be so overcome with lust for a particular girl in this troupe because of how they were dressed that they are going to find out where they live, stalk them, and attack them or something?

That seems like a completely insane fear to me.
posted by kyrademon at 4:46 AM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Let me be the one to break the silence. That was the most offensive thing I've seen in twenty years of teaching. And that includes an elementary school production of Hair."
posted by pxe2000 at 5:31 AM on May 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


kyrademon: ""Seriously, I am baffled at how this is in any way relevant to the discussion.

Then stay baffled, because you missed the point entirely. But if you need more help, consider a phrase often used by molesters: "Eight is too late."

You honestly think it is a rational worry that someone in the audience is going to be so overcome with lust for a particular girl in this troupe because of how they were dressed that they are going to find out where they live, stalk them, and attack them or something?

That seems like a completely insane fear to me.
"

I didn't say it was because of how they were dressed; I didn't say a thing about stalking.

About 90% of child sexual abuse victims know the perp in some way; 68% are abused by family members. Chances are excellent that if there were a pedophile in the audience, he probably knows one of the girls.

Being aware of that possibility in not an 'insane fear', it is simply reality.
posted by bwg at 5:41 AM on May 13, 2010


I didn't watch the whole thing, just the first few seconds. My instinctive nauseated reflex was too strong. This, sadly, reminds me of dances that are routinely performed by girls of similar ages at weddings in Pakistan. Of course it's more ironic in Pakistan, where women dancing like this would rarely be seen in public...
posted by bardophile at 5:51 AM on May 13, 2010


Well the things about this is that this isn't just dance, it's a dance competition. Some very talented girls are competing against other very talented girls. So costumes, music, choreography are all going to be elements to 'push them over the edge' and win the favour of judges. I get it. It makes an impression.

That's probably why I don't like dance competitions in general and why my daughter is in gymnastics and rhythm gymnastics. Lots of skill, less spectacle. That's ok with me.

Grumpy old man signing off.
posted by mazola at 6:38 AM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure that a danceable, nominally girl-power update to the "why buy the cow if you can get the milk for free" warning is exactly a progressive message.
posted by desuetude at 6:42 AM on May 13, 2010 [6 favorites]


I am also disturbed that I got both an ad for pole-dancing lessons and an ad asking me if I wanted to meet 'Sexy People' while I was watching this.

No matter how y'all try to spin this in the positive it's still fucked up.
posted by AzzaMcKazza at 6:52 AM on May 13, 2010


bwg: "About 90% of child sexual abuse victims know the perp in some way; 68% are abused by family members. Chances are excellent that if there were a pedophile in the audience, he probably knows one of the girls."

I'm going to do something really annoying and link to my own comment. Even the point you're making - that most victims of sexual abuse know the perpetrators - kind of undermines the picture you're trying to paint of a dance like this setting off a rabid pedophile.

desuetude: "I'm not sure that a danceable, nominally girl-power update to the "why buy the cow if you can get the milk for free" warning is exactly a progressive message."

Hmm, that might be part of it. But I'd say the real message is, "When men try to use your sexuality as a weapon against you, retaliate."
posted by roll truck roll at 8:07 AM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


The Minipops no longer set the bar for 'inappropriately dressed gyrating children', it seems.
posted by a little headband I put around my throat at 8:15 AM on May 13, 2010


Hmm, that might be part of it. But I'd say the real message is, "When men try to use your sexuality as a weapon against you, retaliate."

I thought the message of the song was that our narrator goes to a club and makes her ex-boyfriend jealous with her provocative hotness?
posted by desuetude at 9:25 AM on May 13, 2010


Uh yeah, that's the plot, and the theme is, you can use your sexuality as a weapon too. I think we're talking about the same thing.
posted by roll truck roll at 9:42 AM on May 13, 2010


Yep, kids who don't even control their bedtimes can control their sexuality and "use it". (or it's a good idea for them to ape adults who do?)
posted by fontophilic at 10:24 AM on May 13, 2010


the theme is, you can use your sexuality as a weapon too.

What an empowering message for our nation's 7-year-old girls!
posted by Nothing... and like it at 10:28 AM on May 13, 2010


holy. cow.

i lasted about 11 seconds. (just to be clear - until switched it off)
posted by marienbad at 1:06 PM on May 13, 2010


What is next for those little girls? Providing the sex interest at NBA games? Toss your hair, shake your rear.
posted by Cranberry at 1:24 PM on May 13, 2010


I came here for Outragefilter, and wasn't disappointed!

Yeah, I think I lasted about... 20 seconds? It was pretty squicky-- plus all the hollering and screaming for the gyrating tots was pretty surreal. This is so far away from my reality and the reality of my friends and family that it might as well exist in some dystopian alternate universe. Who in their right mind thought this was okay?

I suppose I can understand why some people, after reading all the outraged comments, clicked on the vid and wondered what the big deal was. However, I hope I don't ever become that jaded. This was just vulgar. Too bad the skill of these kids can't be used in a more tasteful, age appropriate routine, instead of some pedo-bait dance that feels like the beginning of a particularly lurid Law and Order: SVU episode.
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 2:04 PM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: My god, it's full of prudes.
posted by schoolgirl report at 3:15 PM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I thought this was great. It's spookey. Age-awareness of sexuality fluctuates so much in different generations, countries, centuries, etc. And people flip out about it.

The sexualization of children is going to get more and more prevalant until society goes through some crisis which makes them feel that everyone should be chaste and repressed again.

Back and forth.

This really has got people's ire up, though. "Morality" and "pedophelia" and all that fear-mongering. I kind of love that everyone is so freaked out. I don't quite get it but...okay. Ya'll are freaked out. Cool.
posted by alice_curiouse at 3:59 PM on May 13, 2010


This is how the culture is now. The clothes, the music. It's street-normal.

It's normal for kids to want to do what the teenagers are doing.

(clint eastwood voice)
That don't make it right.
(/clint eastwood voice)
posted by Miles Long at 4:47 PM on May 13, 2010


We can make these stupid little deals of 'oh they're just so threatened by strong sexuality'

So you didn't read the entire paragraph I dedicated to saying that wasn't the case at all?
posted by Nattie at 6:08 PM on May 13, 2010


I'm not sure that a danceable, nominally girl-power update to the "why buy the cow if you can get the milk for free" warning is exactly a progressive message.

I'm a bit puzzled by what you mean by this; are you talking about the lyrics to Single Ladies?
posted by Nattie at 6:25 PM on May 13, 2010


I'm a bit puzzled by what you mean by this; are you talking about the lyrics to Single Ladies?

Yep. Note: I said update. Instead of "don't have sex because you'll be disrespected," it's "demand marriage to validate sexysex."
posted by desuetude at 7:20 PM on May 13, 2010


I'm afraid my compass must be way off because I like the routine and have watched it several times. The costumes are just dance costuming to me. I also like the "My Boyfriend's Back" routine linked earlier. As for the moves, they're part of the Single Ladies video and hip hop in general. I have seen babies barely able to stand trying to do the same moves.

I mean, I do get kinda skeeved out by little girls doing the dutty wine, but not for long, eventually it just becomes "dancing" to me. Eh I don't know.
posted by Danila at 8:49 PM on May 13, 2010


but not for long, eventually it just becomes "dancing" to me.

Watch that process carefully, because this is precisely how consciences wear down. Don't forget that the "dutty wine" style of dancing mimics riding a penis.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:58 PM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


idiopath: roll truck roll: that was my first response too - but now I think maybe she was actually saying that given what you said about real pedophiles actually being aroused by the idea of a bewildered victim, not an adult in a child's body, that the attention given to the pantomime and clothing was off the mark.

Yeah, that's exactly it, thank you. Sorry for not making it clear.
posted by divabat at 10:39 PM on May 13, 2010


Just about most dance out there is a stylized expression of sex or sexual desire. Should minors then NEVER do dance because they could be doing a move that was originally miming a sex position? NEVER do music, because they could be singing a song that's coded for sex? NEVER go into theatre, because the play could have adult undertones that would be considered "inappropriate"?

What about that gangster movie young Jodie Foster was in? How's that any different from this, or the Powderfinger video? As a teenager in Malaysia a lot of my friends thought Mandy Moore wearing a tanktop was "too sexy" - does that mean EVERYONE walking down the streets in the US is a walking sex object? A politician got harassed in the media for photos of her sleeping "nude" - she was wearing a tank top and a sarong. Where do you draw the line on "sexual"? Whose standards?

And can we stop with the ridiculous assertion that the girls' clothing makes them more vulnerable to abuse? It's again victim-blaming. Clothes don't make an iota of a difference when it comes to being abused, raped, molested. If there was a paedophile on the loose in the audience s/he would have been paedophilic no matter what the girls were wearing. It's not like their costume has super magic powers of Inappropriate Sex Ahoy!.
posted by divabat at 11:06 PM on May 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


"Watch that process carefully, because this is precisely how consciences wear down. Don't forget that the "dutty wine" style of dancing mimics riding a penis."

I assume you're out there policing toy guns as well. Or is it just sex that requires attention from our consciences?
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 5:21 AM on May 14, 2010


I assume you're out there policing toy guns as well. Or is it just sex that requires attention from our consciences?

I think it gets our attention in the proportion that adults want to do it with our children.
posted by falcon at 6:28 AM on May 14, 2010


Physical violence towards children happens, too.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 6:45 AM on May 14, 2010


Oh, chill out. I was talking about the process of becoming inured. There's no need to toss around false equivalencies about guns when I wasn't talking about sexuality per se.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:27 AM on May 14, 2010


Burhanistan: "Watch that process carefully, because this is precisely how consciences wear down. "

Burhanistan: "There's no need to toss around false equivalencies "
posted by roll truck roll at 8:20 AM on May 14, 2010


Yes, and?
posted by Burhanistan at 8:34 AM on May 14, 2010


When you actually tell someone that they're losing their conscience because they disagree with you, you kind of waive your right to accuse others of "false equivalencies."
posted by roll truck roll at 9:03 AM on May 14, 2010


When you actually tell someone that they're losing their conscience because they disagree with you, you kind of waive your right to accuse others of "false equivalencies."

I didn't say I agreed or disagreed with them, but was recasting their words of "eventually it just becomes "dancing" to me". Meaning that they became inured. And just because I make one claim to one person doesn't mean I can't also call false equivalency to another. That in itself is a logical fallacy, isn't it?
posted by Burhanistan at 9:08 AM on May 14, 2010


Okay, you win. I came off a little strong there.

I do still hold that, of all the legitimate reasons not to like this dance, fear that it will literally endanger the children in it is misguided. If that's the main complaint, then there should be infinitely more outrage about kids wearing clothing with their names on it.
posted by roll truck roll at 9:54 AM on May 14, 2010


Fair enough. And for me personally, I'm not at all concerned about how a pedophile might get turned on by this or whatever--nothing can stop that kind of thing. It's just the pure fact of the bad aesthetics of having sexually immature people mimic moves that are obviously reminiscent of coitus. But anyway, that's been done to death so I won't belabor it.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:08 AM on May 14, 2010


(using the term "pure fact" with artistic license, of course)
posted by Burhanistan at 10:08 AM on May 14, 2010




"This is taken completely out of context,' Cory Miller, father of one of the girls, told 'Good Morning America' today. 'The girls weren't meant to be viewed by millions of people.'"
OIC. So, it was meant only for a live audience and no one there could possibly have had any objections or concerns about the performance? Right?
posted by ericb at 1:05 PM on May 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


God, those parents come off as absolute fucking idiots.
And I really respects dancers, but the counter-argument "Well this is what it is like in dance" doesn't really do anything for me. There's no idea of what is age appropriate in dance? Why not?
posted by angrycat at 2:26 PM on May 14, 2010


I feel very weird about the fact that peope are criticizing the parents for exposing these children and then here it is, posted somewhere where it will get even more exposure.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 2:34 PM on May 14, 2010


The move I found most offensive [I'm not gonna reload the clip to try and find the time reference - but it's there] is the one where they're squatting down low and then they suggestively wriggle up. This is clearly a simulation of sliding up a male's turgid penis, thereby giving him pleasure.

That's NQR.

nb: Most offensive DOES NOT EQUAL offensive. As in: nicest smelling of all the farts DOES NOT EQUAL the fart smells good.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 12:05 AM on May 15, 2010


Mrs Jones finally caught up with the news. Her comment is that the dancing - and she knows a thing or two about dance - wasn't all that difficult or impressive. Extension is something that comes easy at that age, but for the rest of it, it's mostly modern herky jerky stuff (my phrase, not hers) that doesn't require a whole lot of real control. Put them in a ballet class and we'll see how long they last. Hold that pose!

But back to tut tutting - I'm wondering how many of the people who don't see the problem here have children of their own. Some, I'm sure - after all, it was parents who thought this was a good idea in the first place - but the graphs would be interesting.

One last question, again for those who are bewildered at the fuss: If the minxettes had had garter straps on (and surely the boots-that-look-like-stockings could easily accommodate them), would that fact change your mind? Why or why not?
posted by IndigoJones at 4:33 PM on May 15, 2010


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