How You Choose To Fight Is Important

In Motherhood, Parenting by Jen31 Comments

Social media has been buzzing this week because of a recently released video of “Potty Mouth Princesses”. If you haven’t seen the video it features little girls dressed as princesses saying the “F “word for feminism. At least that is what the title and description of the video says.

I am not linking to the video and I am not embedding it here for you to watch. You can Google it if you would like, but please DO NOT watch it with your children around.

The organization that released and created the video is FCKH8 (again not linking). Upon visiting their site, you are presented with the Potty Mouth Princess video up front and center as well as a very large selection of shirts and products that the visitor can purchase under labels such as anti-sexism, anti racism gear, accessories etc. There is no listing anywhere of how purchasing these items will help women or any other group other than this:

FCKH8.com is a for-profit T-shirt company with an activist heart and a passionate social change mission: arming thousands of people with pro-LGBT equality, anti-racism and anti-sexism T-shirts that act as “mini-billboards” for change…. and since 2010 we have given $250,00 to equality causes. 

I am a an activist and have been for years. I drive a mini van, attend PTA meetings, volunteer at soup kitchens and domestic abuse shelters. I am not opposed to being vocal and have even hit the streets a time or two in both protest and support for carefully selected issues and topics. My “community organizer” card has more than its fair share of punches.  That said, I am concerned when I see videos like this that try to segment an issue into a soundbite where people feel that by sharing the video or even purchasing a shirt that they have also performed some sort of activism.

That isn’t activism.  It’s self promotion.

Years ago I learned that social media can be a tool for sharing important information, but viral videos do not help to feed those who can’t feed themselves or heal those who have been hurt and abused by those who should never hurt them. The word “activist” suggests action.

Real and lasting change for women and our daughter’s can’t be guaranteed by “shock” videos, but by the measured and steady progress and work we as women and men do everyday in our families and communities. It’s hard work and often thankless work, and certainly not self-congratulatory like these filmmakers seem to believe.

Furthermore, this video is just crass.  It is sickening and, quite frankly, I pity people that think that this is a good idea.  How you fight is just as important as what you are fighting for.

What is the point of decrying the disadvantages that women face when you take the best that we have, our young daughters, and mock them?  Because that is what these people are doing, willfully trashing these girls perceived innocence, and doing so to make money only to give a small pittance of a donation to “equality causes“.  Who volunteers their daughters to be used like this?  They are certainly not the people I stand with.

And I guess that is why I am speaking out on this issue which is usually out of my wheelhouse.  Enough.  As a woman, these people do not have the right to speak for me nor my daughters.  I speak for me and will NEVER forfeit that right.

Rather than help women and girls, they are exploiting them for financial gain, while other women stand by and guffaw.  If this video is an example of “feminism” I want none of it. I subscribe to a whole different version of feminism, one that does not require selling out my daughters to make a snarky point.

Because, to be sure, the internet is forever.  These girls will forever be linked to this “performance” and few if any of them were of age to officially permit their likenesses to be used in such a manner.  How would you like to be the girl who’s penultimate childhood moment was dropping the f-bomb on YouTube as a six year old? And yet, judging by some of the comments in the news stories talking about this video, people are cheering this.

My definition of feminism is to call these people out, and let them know that as a woman and a Mother that this isn’t OK.  Being a girl today is hard enough without being force fed garbage through a societal firehose. Girls will have the rest of their lives to deal with all of that.

Right now I want my daughters to have parents they can look up to and trust and the ability to enjoy an after school snack while discussing the good and the bad of their day with me. I will continue to take my daughters with me as we serve the underprivileged of our community and through example I will work to teach them to use both their hearts and minds to solve tough problems.

I hope to teach them the true meaning of courage.

I will teach my daughters that girls ARE powerful. They are powerful because they are strong, wise, loved, valued and appreciated.

My hope is to then see my daughters use this knowledge to empower other women and girls who may not yet know this truth for themselves.

That is how real and lasting change happens.

Jen

 

Comments

  1. Wow and definitely not watching these videos either and not giving play to this. Just aggravates me so much when stuff like this occurs and they try to use that they are not exploiting young women when they clearly are. Thank you for sharing and you can trust I am truly steering clear of this as a woman and a mom to two small girls, because I am offended just hearing this to be quite honest.
    Janine Huldie recently posted…Happy ‘Pumpkin Picking’ Halloween from Emma & Wonderful WednesdayMy Profile

  2. Unfortunately I’ve seen the video Monday night. I don’t understand the parents who allowed their girls to be in it in the first place, and two how exactly is that video supposed to help? I do not consider myself a feminist but to be honest this isn’t the way to spread the message.
    Ana Lynn recently posted…How A Video Game Changed My LifeMy Profile

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      I have never considered myself one either, but after watching the video I was truly upset at the overall way this message was presented. It’s ridiculous and I have been upset watching all over social media people congratulate this video. I want my girls to be treated fairly and dropping f bombs does little to help that cause.
      Jen recently posted…How You Choose To Fight Is Important My Profile

  3. I haven’t seen the video and I don’t want to. I’m not saying I don’t say ‘bad words,’ but I completely agree: this ISN’T about the message, this is about selling t-shirts.

    I will however, say that the people who are yelling “child abuse” at the mother are taking things a bit far. Just my 2 cents.
    Sarah Nenni Daher recently posted…Match Game PrintableMy Profile

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      Glad you agree, only donating 250k over 4 years screams we want to make more money and so look at us.

      My question is how will this affect her child, not the mother. She made her choice I believe it was a poor one, but I don’t think it was child abuse. The mother put herself out there into the social media world opening herself up to all kinds of criticism. Now how will her daughter fare the storm?
      Jen recently posted…How You Choose To Fight Is Important My Profile

  4. Goodness, this is just the post I wanted to write. That video made me so sad! I’m certainly all about equal rights for men and women but this video was simply an exploitation of little girls – not a call for equality. That’s not feminism in my view!
    Susannah recently posted…Simply Loving ~ Jamberry Nails {Giveaway}My Profile

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      Thanks Susannah! I was sickened by the video, but then when I visited their site and saw that it was a place to buy merchandise I felt even worse that people were encouraging this instead of seeing it as what it is a total scam job and exploitation!
      Jen recently posted…How You Choose To Fight Is Important My Profile

  5. I swear on occasion, but I’m not proud of it. I’ve always thought that people who constantly revert to swear words just don’t have a better, more creative way to express their opinions. I don’t want my kids my kids speaking that way either. I would hope that they could come up with something better to say, rather than resorting to crass shock value!
    Rabia @TheLiebers recently posted…Wordless Wednesday: A Day OffMy Profile

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      I swear too and try hard not to Especially hard was that time I slammed my hand in the car door.

      My husband says that a perpetual swearer is someone who lacks imagination, because there are so many great other words we can use to illustrate our point.
      Jen recently posted…How You Choose To Fight Is Important My Profile

  6. I have seen the video because a friend posted it on my wall because.. well.. Scarlet tells fart jokes! That said, I would never allow Scarlet to participate in such a video, or make one. Or watch one.
    It was a little hard to watch. Definitely self-promotion. Definitely.
    Tamara recently posted…You’re All The Things I’ve Got To Remember.My Profile

  7. Love the picture of you and your beautiful daughters! I saw this video on a news channel I think. I was so shocked! The first thing I thought was who would let their daughter’s participate in a video like that. I agree with everything you have said here, Jen, including the self-promotion issue. I believe true activism is actually the extreme opposite of self-promotion.
    Candace recently posted…Living SoberMy Profile

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      It was one the news!!! Ack, I have to edit the news when my children are around as well, One time I had it on and they were talking about a string of murders in our town and I quickly turned it off, hoping my children had caught very little of the story. Later at the dinner table my 6 year old told all of us that we live in a very dangerous city where people were dropping dead everywhere and that we should be careful we weren’t next!
      Jen recently posted…How You Choose To Fight Is Important My Profile

  8. Hi Jen, I’ve not heard of the video or the organsation that you are referring to, but thank you for raising awareness that this type of thing is wrong. Whatever anyone is trying to change in the world, getting children to stand in front of a camera swearing is not the way of going about things…I won’t be checking out the video or the organsation.

    Changing things takes baby steps taken by lots of people together. Shock tactics like this can cause more damage than anything and as you pointed out, these people are in more for the money than anything else.

    Good call writing this post.
    Debbie recently posted…Why I Blog…My Profile

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      So true Deb! To change things we have to take baby steps, many, many,many of them. I just couldn’t believe though that people were being duped by this video, when the company was all about making money! This is not the kind of change I want. A world where very young children swear like sailors. Um, no thank you!
      Jen recently posted…How You Choose To Fight Is Important My Profile

  9. Thank you, Jen, for a powerful post. I agree completely that this “campaign” is all about ridiculing little girls to gain a profit for the company. It is incredibly insulting to all females. Unfortunately, the result will be more media attention for the company; a reward for their poor, despicable behavior. I cannot imagine what parent allowed their daughters to participate in this campaign. So sad.

    Thank you for sharing on the #SHINEbloghop.

    Have a wonderful week!

    xoxo
    Tammi
    Tammi recently posted…Co-Hosting the SHINE Blog HopMy Profile

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      Thank you Tammi! You know when I posted this I really thought that I was going to be raining all kinds of trouble down on myself, but I just couldn’t stay silent. It is so encouraging to see so many other good and wise women in agreement on the unnecessary exploitation this video promotes. I too am saddened that a parent thought this was a good idea, There are so many other ways to help women and young girls.
      Jen recently posted…How You Choose To Fight Is Important My Profile

  10. I saw the link to this on my Facebook news feed at some point. I read the title and knew it wasn’t worth my time or exposing myself to language that I hate — to see that a little girl was the focus made me sick. I don’t need to watch it to know that it’s wrong and something we don’t need to be filling our minds, or our children’s minds with. Thanks for speaking up.
    Erin recently posted…If momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happyMy Profile

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      Thanks Erin! The 90 seconds I watched the video was garbage and a waste of my time. Definitely could have read a book to my daughter and done more good for girls than those 90 seconds I watched!
      Jen recently posted…Wordless Wendnesday Link-upMy Profile

  11. I haven’t seen the video, I have two girls whom i brought up the best way i know, i will not allow anybody to exploit my little girls. Some people will do anything for money, i feel sad about this. This is a great reminder for all of us, women are powerful because they are strong, wise, loved, valued and appreciated. Thanks for sharing. GREAT POST.
    sherill recently posted…How to Face Your Fears, Hawaii Style (Part 1 of 2)My Profile

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      Thanks so much Sherrill! I too can’t believe a Mom signed off on this video!! I wonder if she even did make all that much…. Hopefully whatever she got she put into a college fund for her daughter.
      Jen recently posted…Wordless Wendnesday Link-upMy Profile

  12. I agree! I too will not watch the videos. I agree with you that you should use your knowledge to empower other women and you do not need these kind of videos to do it.

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