A Diesel Jeans ad lamenting that they aren't pimping girls??
Sex sells. It's as ingrained in advertising as celebrity endorsements and those nauseating sing-song jingles that weasel their way into your subconscious. Over half of all ads featuring women present them in a sexual manner. That percentage jumps to 75 in men's magazines and hovers around the 60% mark even in female fashion magazines. (Julie M. Stankiewicz and Francine Rosselli in their article “Women as Sex Objects and Victims in Print Advertisements”)
But the women aren't always women, increasingly major publications and ad campaigns are using young girls in sexual presentations to sell their product. The sexual objectification of children is nothing new but the frequency and blatancy with which these kids are exploited is troublesome, especially in a world so charged with evil intent, so bent toward the sexual domination of children.
Recently dialogue on the subject has been re-opened due to the French Vogue photo shoot featuring Thylane Loubry Blondeau (above), the 10-year-old daughter of Patrick Blondeau, a former soccer player, and Véronika Loubry, a French TV star. Another non-Vogue affiliated shoot features her topless and without pants, both images have been called "implied nudity". These are NOT OK!
Some within the industry have spoken out against the inappropriate nature of these pictures but others defend them under the tired banner of freedom of expression. But this is NOT art, not satire as some have suggested (although Vogue maintains their spread was), nor is it the last vestiges of puritanical society raining on your pedophile parade. This is the stealing of innocence. This is the blurring of lines, the concerted effort to weaken the resolve of decency. This is NOT OK!!!
Recently we featured a story of the largest online child porn bust in history. 600 pedophiles from around the world engaged in some of the most grotesque and gruesome deviancy with children as young as 3 or 4 months old. This is currently only the perverted fringe but for how long? Sex sells and people are buying. How about lingerie for your 1st grader? Words that should never, ever be in the same sentence. The French lingerie company Joures Apres Lunes disagrees.
According to Dr. Eileen Zurbriggen, Chair of the APA Task Force, "there is ample evidence to conclude that sexualization has negative effects in a variety of domains, including cognitive functioning, physical and mental health, and healthy sexual development." Our little girls will learn to see themselves as valuable only to the degree they are sexually viable, and it affects our boys too. Boys "are also learning to value women only for their sex appeal, leading to increased incidents of sexual harassment, sexual violence, and increased demand for child pornography," Zurbriggen adds. There is the very real connection of print exploitation to the physical abuse of children. As we previously detailed, 90% of child rapists use child porn. The visual stimulus of sexualized and sexually abused children a part of their ritualistic fantasy.
Above, a Manga image, the popular graphic novels are full of sexualized child-looking characters. Below, a child models a bikini. Brands such as Abercrombie and Fitch have even marketed thongs to pre-teens.
When the fashion industry, the gaming industry, the music and graphic novel industries objectify girls and portray them as sex trophies to be won or sex goddesses to be worshiped the pedophiles win. Society is being reformed, remade into their imaginations, vile and reprobate. And as the average consumer, who shops those stores and buys those products and is inundated by sexual images of kids, there comes a point where those images cease to shock. And slowly we are immunized, slowly our will to resist fails, and each day our little girls are sold and we are the ones buying.
Please boycott companies that use the sexuality of children to sell their product. If you walk into a store and there are images of sexually objectified children, walk out. Put down the magazines with the offending ads, cancel your subscriptions. Send emails to the CEO's and editors. Let your voice be heard. And parents be careful what your children watch, play, read and listen to. Re-enforce with them what true beauty is. They are only young for such a short time. Let them be kids, please.