While France may be the land of liberté and laissez-faire, there are a few things that will not stand on French soil, among them ketchup in school, Rihanna’s “We Found Love” video and burkas. Now resent events add child beauty pageants, padded bras and high heels for young girls to that list. Not bad, not bad…
A new French government report has called for a ban on child beauty pageants and padded bras and high heels for young girls, reports MSNBC. The recommendations come on the heels (pun slightly intended) of a January 2011 photo spread in French Vogue featuring Thylane Lena-Rose Blondeau, a high-fashion model clad in sky-high heels and provocative attire. While that is nothing unusual in the world of glossy magazines, the fact that the model was a 10-year-old girl raised even the most Botoxed eyebrows around the globe. While French Vogue defended its photo spread by explaining the girls were just dressing like their mothers, the international outcry was deafening. The photo reminded me of the film “Lolita”, and the girl’s provocative feature, did make people of the fashion industry think twice.
In light of the global attention, the French government decided to study the topic and has now issued their report. Chantal Jouanno, the senator who authored the report, said that the sexualization of young women was “contrary to the dignity of the human being” and was a step backward for gender equality.
Finally, we get a reaction more in the way most of the world think. I love spending time in France, and even more now, when I hear that child pageants might be banned, and that even the most important scene in the Fashion world, will not invite toddlers to play. Let the toddlers play at home, and let the fashion world be for the grown-ups.
The young girl’s mother defended the photo-shoot, and that only made matter worse, in my opinion. And again, this act made me think of the many pagent moms we’ve seen on the reality show “Toddlers & Tiaras”. The ones, that claime they are doing this for their daughters, and that their children loves the attention. When the children in fact are to young to understand what they love or like, and they are just exhausted and tired. Little persons, that are in no way protected from their parents “push and pull” strategies.
The decision from the French Government is probably shocking to some pageant parents, and there will probably not be much consideration on the alleged upcoming show Toddlers & Tiaras Go to Paris.
VIVE LA FRANCE!