Jennifer Tesch of Madison Heights, Michigan is the mother of a 6-year-old girl who is a member of a flag football cheerleading team. Jennifer questions the team about one of its cheers saying that she felt it was a tad bit inappropriate for 6-year-olds to be singing. The cheer has been around for ages. I remember chanting it during childhood and I was never a cheerleader. It goes a little something like this: “Our backs are aching, our skirts are to tight, our booties are shaking from left to right.” The team kicked the 6-year-old off the squad. Parents and coaches were irate saying that the mother needs to put her child on a team that doesn’t have this specific cheer and that it isn’t a big deal because the cheer has been around for ages and no one else has a problem with it.
That thinking from the parents is part of the problem or maybe in my very young 33-years of life, I’m old-fashioned. As “innocent” as some may think this cheer is, that’s the problem. One is concerned about the “innocence” of the words but not the innocence of the child. Words are powerful. They affect us consciously and SUBCONSCIOUSLY. “Tight skirts”, “booty”, “booty shaking”. Why would a 6-year-old need to say anything like that? Whether it’s in fun” or not? Society is over-sexed. Almost everything from tv to billboards are sexual in nature even when the product has nothing to do with sex. I saw a billboard in Atlanta of Jennifer Anniston wrapped in a white bed sheet laying across a bed. You assume she’s naked because the bed sheet is wrapped around her from her breast down. Her hair is kind of messy and she has this sexy sultry look on her face. She’s advertising a brand of bottled water. So they built this scene around a naked women in bed wrapped in a white bed sheet with the ruffled hair and a sexy stare for a bottle of water? That’s just one of many examples but back to the children. You have clothing lines with words written across the behinds of little girls. Then there are the clothing lines whose name is sexual in nature but has a line for children. For example, Apple Bottoms. The name alone speaks for itself. It’s about the shape of a womans ass. Why is there a children’s line that’s named after the shape of a womans ass? The words “APPLE BOTTOMS” is written across the chest and the back of the pants for little girls. It’s stupid and inappropriate for children. Period. You have entertainers like Miley Cyrus who performs at some kind of kids/teens awards show on a stripper pole. At the time Miley was about 16-years-old. No one thought that was inappropriate? Furthermore, her target market and followers are girls much younger than her. Although Miley is 18 now, she’s not singing for other 18 and 20-year-olds. She’s singing for my nieces that are barely 12.
I think this Michigan mom was absolutely right in questioning why 6-year-olds are chanting “my booty is shaking from left to right.” We can’t complain and cry about staggering statistics of STD’s in 10-year-olds when everything being said to them directly and indirectly is sexual in nature. And if I hear the “sex sells” argument one more time I’m going to SCREAM. Yeah sex sells but stop selling that shit to our children.