Every day, hundreds of thousands of people see the television show called "Toddlers & Tiaras" which depicts the lives of young girls and boys, sometimes as young as 2 years of age, participating in beauty pageants. At these pageants, children are fed outrageous amounts of sugar and caffeine, forced into uncomfortable and degrading outfits, put through hours of painful facial/body altering techniques and forced to parade around in front of strangers for the enjoyment and entertainment of audience members.
A notable case of this would be the now infamous "Honey Boo-Boo Child", whose real name is Alana Thompson. On her feature on "Toddlers & Tiaras", Alana's mom admitted to feeding her something called "Go-Go Juice" to make her perky and energetic. (This was later revealed to contain half Mountain Dew and half Red Bull). The episode then went on to show Alana jumping around in what has been described as a "caffeine-high", unable to control herself.
Other episodes have shown parents forcing their young daughters to wear outrageous wigs, go into a spray tanning booth, wear uncomfortable outfits, pluck their eyebrows, put on mascara, lipstick, blush, glitter and eyeshadow and parade around on-stage in outfits that are sometimes as little as Daisy Duke shorts and a belly shirt. These girls are often as young as two years of age. Alana Thompson's mother, on her episode, was shown yelling at her daughter to "show the judges your belly".
And while this might all sound horrifying, there's an even greater shock: Due to the definition of child pageants not being defined as "work", there are no laws in place nationally to protect these young children from exploitation.
Many of these pageants offer cash and other various valuables as prizes. So, even though a child could be competing for the $500 cash prize, they aren't considered to be "working". We want to change that.
We want to put a limitation on how many beauty pageants a parent can enter their child into per year. A child should not be forced into over 100 pageants a year to rake in the cash prizes for their obsessive/greedy parents. Beauty pageants have proven to be psychologically damaging (http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/food-thought/201108/child-beauty-pageants-what-are-we-teaching-our-girls) and have proven to be unpopular with the general population in various polls (http://www.glamour.com/health-fitness/blogs/vitamin-g/2009/08/poll-do-toddler-beauty-pageant.html).
A child as young as 2 should not be forced into something that is potentially psychologically-damaging and degrading by their parents, either for their entertainment or financial gain. Help us change this! Tell the US Department of Labor to place LIMITATIONS on Beauty Pageant Participation!
A G started this petition with a single signature, and now has 190 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.