Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Single Ladies, little girls

For centuries, little girls have emulated their mothers or other adult female role models around them. Wearing mom’s high heels, donning make up, and exhibiting adult mannerisms are all child’s play. Yet there are certain lines children shouldn't cross, and they depend on those same role model adults to teach them their limits. Good sense tells reasonable adults to not let a six-year-old smoke, drink alcohol, or wear stilettos on the street. Why, then, have certain parents and leaders of a dance competition gotten so defensive over public outcry regarding a troop of six- and seven-year- old children dancing provocatively?
The parents and contest spokesperson have weighed in saying there is nothing wrong with the dance. They believe that the people calling the gyrations perverse, are indeed perverse themselves. Even the little girls have been asked to weigh in on the topic, which is another bad move on the parents’ part because the girls are biased. The responses from all of those in the “pro” corner are nothing more than what is expected. If parents admitted to letting their children dance obscenely, the adults would be arrested.
No one likes to have other people judge his or her parenting skills. At the same time, this was a large dance competition, and these girls practiced endlessly in preparation. Did no one step up and even question the costume choice? Mid-drift tops, short shorts, and thigh high bowed stockings are not appropriate for elementary school girls who are kicking their legs over their shoulder and hugging their ankles to their ears. Gyrating hips are exactly that. Such moves are universal for fertility and sexuality.
Denying there is any resemblance to other choreographed versions of “All the Single Ladies,” one parent stated that the inspiration for this team was the trio of Chipettes from “Alvin and the Chipmunks Squeakquel.” Parents should first and foremost, refrain from teaching their children to emulate cartoon characters, but in this case, the Chipettes were clothed conservatively and any hip gyrations are indiscernible. Unfortunately, this knocks out the mom’s effort to put a cutesy spin on the sordid tale.
To compound what seemingly was a one-time faux pas, a second video, from the 2009 competition has surfaced. Once again, little girls are dressed in mid-drift tops, over-the-knee-high stockings with bows, and similar choreography to the song, “My Boyfriend’s Back.”. The links are being booted off the Internet almost as quickly as they appear.
The team of dancers did nothing wrong. They did as they were instructed by the adults around them, and their efforts were rewarded. The public scrutiny must seem like insane criticism to these girls since they have been praised for their hard work. Their technique, precision, and execution of style were exceptional and beyond the abilities of those three times their ages.
Parents, don’t make your kids grow up any faster than they already do. Besides, nothing can compare to the knock-out version of the now controversial tune.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Nashville - still waters run deep

Note: I've made multiple efforts to correct the sizing on this video to no avail. If it appears skewed on your monitor, view on YouTube.

I heard about it on the news - briefly. Tennessee was hit with terrible rains a few weeks ago; Nashville flooded. That was all. No rallying cries for aid to a community devastated by a 500-year flood; no ads for fund-raising concerts; no celebrity endorsements through Larry King interviews. Like the rain, the news dropped the flood waters and moved on to other locations.

Thanks to my sister from the Memphis area, I have been enlightened. One thing you will notice in this footage - the photos are varied. Most news stories latch onto a few photos that are shown over, and over ... and over again, as though the producers have Asperger's Syndrome.

Read more at "We are Nashville."