(Okay, in reality there’s no question in my mind that my mom is the best mom in the world, but this story has me seriously cheering for moms like this everywhere!)
This week a “crossdressing” story hit the mainstream news big time, and has generated quite a bit of buzz on both the internet and within the mainstream media. A midwestern mom’s 5 year old boy decided to attend a halloween event going as “Daphne” from Scooby Doo. After waiting a few days and discussing it with the boy to make sure that was his choice the mom helped him make the best Daphne outfit ever (pictures on her blog).
The little boy ended up having a great time, and his classmates thought it was cool too. Several of the other moms gave the boy a ‘high five’ as he walked in. But a few of the moms voiced their disapproval openly, and criticized the mom for “allowing” her boy to wear a costume like that. )Read the full story on her blog Nerdy Apple Bottom.)
Lately, we’ve been hearing a lot in the news about kids being bullied (sometimes to suicide) for being gay. But I think this story illustrates that this isn’t just an issue with “kids”, but a problem that originates with homophobic and mean spirited adult bullies. In this case, it appears that none of the kids in the venue had any problem with the boy coming as Daphne, it was the adults that made a big deal about it saying that the boy ‘might get made fun of’ for being gay as a result.
This kind of behavior just demonstrates how stupid homophobia and discrimination is. After all, the only people at this event that bullied this boy was the very moms that were supposedly intervening in his best interest. Furthermore, as this mom points out, if her daughter had decided to go to the same event in some kind of ‘boy’ costume these same moms wouldn’t have even noticed.
Episodes like this go to show how ridiculous this kind of discrimination and bullying is, and is further evidence of the sexualization of kids – not by a ‘gay agenda’, or ‘liberals’, but by the very people who claim to be trying to protect kids from it. The truth is that the only people that brought ‘sex’ into the picture in this case were the adults. Ironically people like this put such an overwhelming proportion of energy into “guarding” their kids against sex, that they actually end up being the catalyst for the very thing they hate. The truth is that 5 year old kids are not thinking about sexuality, and who is “gay” and who isn’t! It’s only sick and immature adults around them that are! It’s only sick adults that can take a completely innocent childlike game such as ‘dressing up’ or a 5 year old halloween costume and sexualize it, and criticize that kid over it. No wonder some kids grow up to be so insecure about themselves in the world.
This isn’t even mentioning the fact that the homophobia exhibited by these moms is completely unfounded. A quick look at the facts by anyone even remotely capable of using the internet shows that here in reality (where the rest of us live) kids who play dress-up as kids don’t actually grow up to be ninjas and princesses and vampires. Girls who role play male characters don’t grow up to be lesbians, or transgender – and neither do boys. There is nothing wrong with masculinity or femininity that deserves the kind of discrimination.
But here’s the thing, even if there was a connection between kids role playing and crossdressing when they grow up, another very elementary search of the real world indicates that less than 1 in 10 crossdressers are gay.
The basis for this discrimination and abuse is not only morally and ethically wrong, but downright stupid. And as Nerdy Apple Bottom says, even if the boy does grow up to be gay – she will still love and accept him as he is. Period.
I am both inspired and motivated by moms like this in our society who both love their kids unconditionally, but are also unwilling to cower in the face of discrimination and instead engage the world around them to make it a better place for their kid to inhabit. I want to be this kind of adult.