My Blog__ The High-Heel Debate
Ever since Suri Cruise started strutting around in her mini-clickers many people have questioned if children should be wearing high-heels during their early physical and social developmental stages. Suri Cruise's celebrity mom, Katie Holmes, defended her child's right to wear heels stating to Access Hollywood that the kitten heels Suri wears are supportive because they are meant for kids learning ballroom dancing.
In the summer, USA Today published an article about the effects that high-heels can have on young girls, mostly medical issues concerned with bone development, back pain and overall safety of high-heels on the playground. Doctors in the article agree that girls under 12 years old could damage their bodies by wearing high-heels too often (boys under 12 weren't tested). Some mother's simply struggle with the "suggestive" nature of high-heels; others have no problem with it. One Bay Area mom said, "They're definitely not suggestive at all. Suggestive to me is inappropriate." And there is still the issue of conditioning femininity because saying, "Oh look at your big girl shoes!" sends a very strong message about what it means to dress like a "real woman". Some feminist bloggers have added their own opinions on the matter, saying "heels, like cigarettes and excessive alcohol consumption, are one of the we-know-it's-bad-for-us adult privileges that kids haven't earned. And there are worse things than having something to look forward to - even if when you get there, you decide you don't want it."
Okay, fine. So the adults are all up in arms about this, but what about the little girls? I mean, the media should be asking the toddlers what they think of all this since, in a few short years, they might be given a pair of kitten heels and told to strut. We need to give this heavily marginalized social demographic the voice they deserve. We need to go straight to the source: the young ladies of tomorrow.
So, I did.
This little girl had a lot to say about the heel debate, but her dumb ass dad kept trying to gloss over the issue by distracting her with typical toddler games:
She managed to get her two cents in, despite the fact that her mother was feeding her leading questions, trying to change the subject. What I gathered from this girl is that she is pissed off. She thinks heels, as much as any item of overly feminized clothing such as pink dresses or sparkly accessories, should be the choice of the individual in question. In her case, she hates it. I think she even said, "Fuck this Barbie-colored car seat!" to which her psychologically absentee Dad replied, "Hot potato?"
Most kids would be happy to receive gifts, but this little girl was offended when a "monster" (in this case actor, Tom Cruise) tried to give her a bag of designer high-heels that Suri had gotten bored of. She decided she would take matters into her own hands:
Another toddler - who wasn't about to give up snack time to talk about footwear - hit the nail on the head regarding fashion and choice:
I know it's hard to catch her points, but essentially she is talking about individuality and feminized clothing. She thinks high-heels could be cool for special occasions but feels that running around in one inchers would be a nightmare. Her main point is footwear variety, equality and choice. We also learned that this mini-feminist is involved in the topless debate; if men can go sans shirt, why can't we?
Lastly, we found a little kid who's take on the matter was a bit flippant. However, it seemed like her mom's influence was playing a large role in her opinion. A bit of a Sarah Palin-Bristol situation:
Girls, remember that you are the future.