A retort to the Tory-Graph
We just stumbled across this article in The Telegraph and have mixed feelings towards it.
Firstly, let’s address the horrendously misleading title. I can hear my TROLL klaxon wailing from about 50 miles away. Enough said.
However, regarding the comments from the BBC and the idea that female role models shouldn’t be sexy…. why the hell not?! Perhaps sexy is now a pejorative word. Empowered, Comfortable, Confident. These words seem to inspire a semantic field that is less threatening to childhood innocence.
I just don’t understand why looking “sexy” is a bad thing, as if women aren’t sexual beings. Would the BBC prefer if we perhaps taped down our breasts between the hours of 6am to a comfy breast watershed of 9pm? Like the kids haven’t just come off the boob a few years previously? Of course the sexualisation of children is a terrible thing, but perhaps running around set with a kleenex and scrubbing the faces of intelligent and respected presenters isn’t the way to go about it (if the BBC would stop hiring peadophiles as presenters I mean that’d be a good place to start). But it’s not like children are being presented with women who are engaging in sexual acts or being put in sexual situations. What a woman wears or how she dresses should bear no relevance to her achievements or her calibre as a role model. I dream of a day when we can live in a society where women can be judged, not on the colour of their lipstick, but by the content of their character.
Children are not aware of sexuality and the connotations of their appearance until it is imposed upon them by society. My little sister (between the ages of 6 and 7) frequently ran around the house half naked and happy as can be until my father told her it was ‘disgusting’ and ‘indecent’ to do so. Since then she’s been wrapped up in more layers than a wedding cake.
Girls are growing up in a society where their sexuality is increasingly something that must either be a) exploited or b) hidden. If any trace of women’s sexuality is wiped from our screens, we are actively contributing to the cultivation of a society of shame. Where sexuality is seen as corrupt, evil, and demonic. Children’s TV is ultimately about education. Why not teach them to be happy with their bodies and with their appearance?
We feel here at TLB that if there is dress code for CBBC presenters it should be implemented across both sexes and should regard common professionalism and not sexuality.
Do let us know what you think.
MJ & VJ