Babies in bikinis; sexy 7-year-olds dancing to ‘Single Ladies’: Which of these is age-appropriate or neither?

Yesterday morning I ran across a blog asking if babies in bikinis were cute or icky? Strollerderby found the original conversation on Café Mom where the moms were pretty evenly divided on the topic. Here’s a sample of the conversation.

From Strollerderby:

“What’s interesting to me is how the debate is framed from such vastly different perspectives. For some moms, it’s an issue of modesty and for others, it’s a question of the sexualization of girls. A few moms expressed concern about sexual predators, and others said that bikinis should be reserved for grown-up women.”

“The majority of moms who weighed in seemed to think it was “no big deal,” but several voiced strong opposition.

“ ‘The point of the bikini being created was to show off as much body as possible including boobs and butt, hips, etc… the parts men find sexy. Bikinis are lingerie that have been accepted to be worn in public. Why would anyone put publicly accepted sex attire on a child?’ wrote one mom.”

I sort of chuckled at the discussion. I don’t really have a problem with a baby in a bikini as long it isn’t a thong or have padded cups – a la the bikini marketed to tweens with padded cups.

I usually get my girls tankinis – which cover a little bit more than a true bikini – because it’s just so much easier to go to the bathroom (or change a swim diaper) in a two-piece suit.

But I digress.

Later in the day I ran across another blog with something a bit more shocking than the babies in bikinis.

The Huffington Post picked up a You Tube video of girls identified as  7-year-olds not only dressed scantily but dancing fairly suggestively to Beyonce’s “All The Single Ladies.”

Now they are good dancers. I am amazed by their dancing.

However, I don’t think that some of the moves they are doing (some of the straight legs bends or should/chest shaking) were really appropriate dance moves for their age. Especially not in red and black “bikini” tops and hot pants.

So what do you think about the video? Is there a line crossed here? Could this be made right if they weren’t dancing as suggestively or they had on more clothes?

What do you think about the babies in bikinis? Anything wrong going on there?

An AJC reporter is seeking parents who own a drop-sided crib for a story. See this blog for more details.

235 comments Add your comment

Jess

May 14th, 2010
10:13 pm

I was in dancing for six years… I did Ballet, Jazz, Tap, and Lyrical. How can the few of you say this is ART of dancing? Maybe in a strip club but stuff like this is something 7 year olds just should not be doing. Don’t get me wrong they have some talent.. but this kind of dancing and clothing needs to be saved for the older girls or better yet strippers. The only art I saw in this was the fouettes, and a couple of other ballet moves.. the rest NO.

Joy

May 15th, 2010
12:14 am

This crazy, I can not believe these little girls parents actually allowed them to do this… I am truly shocked by that video. The parents need to slapped back to reality. Seriously, I want to know if the parent really thought/think this is alright for the little girls to do. Damn they’re taking their innocents away from them.

HB

May 15th, 2010
12:55 am

For those saying this dance is artistic expression and that the girls don’t know what it means (to me, those to statements contradict each other — they don’t know what they’re expressing, but those moves are important, creative, and artistic on their part?), what if these girls were singing instead of dancing? Would it be ok for a choir of little girls to sing “I wanna sex you up”? Or what about profane lyrics? I mean, hey, since little girls don’t know what f@!# means (they aren’t even curious about that yet! yeah, right), then it’s fine for them to sing it as long as they show a lot of talent and it’s a competition, right?

Really, I can’t see any justification for having 8-y-olds perform this routine.

DK

May 15th, 2010
9:21 am

And we wonder why so many grown women behave badly? Our “beauty” pageants are now just T & A shows, and when you hear the ladies speak, you know all their time & effort and $$ went into fake stuff to look sexier (not prettier), and zero in studying anything. There’s a time and place for sexuality, this culture says it values intelligent women, but everything we see says to win you must project nothing but sex. Don’t even get me started on pop culture and shows on TV–ever ask yourself why on every sitcom is it OK for the guy to be fat & bald, but the wife has to be hot with lots of T & A? Why does she have to hold to a standard of sexiness, but the guys don’t? I remember back in the 70’s when sexiness had to be maintained by both men & women. It may have been too sexy, but at least both genders had to keep up. When did guys get to quit (baggy clothes, sloppy grooming), and women had to shrink already tiny clothes so every bit of flesh is showing and be enhanced from their fake nails to fake hair extensions to pubic landscaping?

stephen ball

May 15th, 2010
10:23 am

Finally this morning on ABC a child psychologist exclaimed that this was wrong on so many levels…and that because it was a dance routine done in the contest of competition made no difference…he was appalled that the parents allowed this….I guess that answers the questions for most of us who found this shocking.

catlady

May 15th, 2010
10:36 am

My daughters danced, and one was a cheerleader, but they NEVEr would have continued if (stuff) like this had been peddled as their” routine”! Thankfully, I live in a community that has much less tolerance for (stuff) like this. The girls did have a dance they did when the band played a song which involved hip thrusting. I complained, and it was eliminated. I am actually one of the most liberal posting on this blog, but, please, parents—PARENT! Raise your children in the “nurture and admonition of the Lord.” I have complained to administrators and left “performances” where sex was peddled off as “art” or “free speech.”

You would not believe some of the things little girls come to school dressed in–like strippers, pole dancers, and hoochie mamas. Please teach your daughters to present themselves as vital, alive, INTELLIGENT people, not modeled after some pop star.

On the question of babies in bikinis, I have no problem. I have never seen one that was offensive. However, I would be concerned about skin damage due to sun exposure. Once a little girl reaches a certain age and she is in fact starting to look like a girl instead of some androgynous person, then choices should be carefully made. Do we want to see 9 year old boys running around in skin tight speedos?

motherjanegoose

May 15th, 2010
11:07 am

@ stephen great news!

In my line of work, the parents will still disagree with the expert and say,
“HE/SHE does not know my child…” CORRECT but he/she knows more children ( and more about children) than you ever will.

Alix

May 15th, 2010
4:32 pm

I’m not a mother, simply a 24 year old woman and an elder sister, but I feel I should say that these little girls are all amazingly talented. but the song, dance and video were geared towards young adults and adult women. “ladies” not “girls” or “children”.

and the audience, parents, and judges who all sat back during audition, and the other competitions to get to this level of championship who ALLOWED the costumes and dance routine to be performed should all be ashamed of themselves. i’m disgusted with this on all angles.

p disney

May 15th, 2010
7:17 pm

Apparently the people complaining have never been the parent of a dancer and see how hard these kid work. These 7 year olds are AMAZING……give them the credit they deserve.

lb

May 15th, 2010
7:45 pm

excuse me Mr. Stephen Ball: you are a total freaking idiot. BTW, what does God, the Lord have to do with any of this?

motherjanegoose

May 15th, 2010
9:57 pm

@ lb…and you are?

@ p disney…apparently you know more than the child psychologist on ABC? ( yes, they probably just plucked up any idiot wanted to join them..after all it is national news) I knew it would not take long for someone to step up to the plate…LOL

lb

May 15th, 2010
11:11 pm

Original Blog:

May 14th, 2010
12:29 am
Unbelievably talented girls. So much dedication and practice goes into a routine like this; especially if it is a competitive team. Endless hours in a gyms, carpools, etc. Get over it!
If I was their parent, I would be proud too. Turn on your televisions @
7:30 in the evening and check out reruns of Friends, Two and a Half Men, etc. I believe Rachel and Monica are arguing over who can use the last condom in a recent episode……now that’s offensive. These kids show that working hard, staying focused, being dedicated will enable one to reach higher goals. Something lazy, unhealthy and overweight American kids could learn from. Their outfits are costumes that we, as consumers, promote.

****May I add please, that a pedophile unfortunately doesn’t need this type of provocation. They would hsve urges for a child in a burka.
To the right wing, churchgoing, old fashioned folks here: times are changing. These girls should be commended for the amount of work and dedication that went into this at such a young age. Their parents arent teaching them to be “strippers” or “loose”. They have taught them that hard work pays off! ( You do realize that your parents said this same crap about Elvis and the Beatles?)Too bad our lazy, MCdonald loving, overweight children don’t participate. Lastly, while you are taking jabs at these girls and their parents, I suppose none of your children are playing “assassins” on their video games. Much Healthier! P.S If you dont look nice in your swimwear, perhaps you too should try some exercise.

Stop opining unless your educated enough to know what REAL child abuse is.

Sulina

May 15th, 2010
11:27 pm

While I agree with the sentiment that if you don’t want your child dressed that way you shouldn’t dress your child that way… This video crosses a line.

Since I don’t live in California I can’t boycott the dance studio that produced this filth but I CAN boycott Paul Mitchell for supporting what is certainly exploitative and is little more than child pornography.

So goodbye Paul Mitchell. I’ve used your products for years but if you are going to financially support dance competitions that don’t have rules to prevent exploitation of children and promote over sexualizing of young girls then I’m voting with my pocket book and my feet.

It is really sad to see a company that normally known for its charitable work get drug through the mud like this. Millions of people seeing those girls dance with your logo visible behind them is NOT good for your business.

Hello Suave!

Mr. N

May 16th, 2010
12:52 am

These girls demonstrated confidence, talent, work ethic, physical fitness, ability to perform under pressure, etc. when most other 9 year old’s are eating Doritos in front of the TV. All those parents complaining need to reflect on what their 9 year old’s have accomplished thus far, probably very little.

motherjanegoose

May 16th, 2010
5:02 am

lb…still not sure you are in the same league as Stephen Ball, who has been involved with dancers for YEARS or a child psychologist, who perhaps is educated to know what real child abuse is ( as you mentioned).

Opinions are like noses…we all have one….even me….the professionals ( here) can shed light on the subject and they have. I missed your professional credentials, were they mentioned?

You did get one thing right…times are changing and those who work with children all the time, see how well that is working out….NOT. You might follow catlady…she has worked with children a LONG time and you could learn a few things from her posts.

I am not an expert on this topic…I simply appreciate those who can validate their opinion and not call names to those whose opinion differs from their own.

Angie

May 16th, 2010
9:30 am

I’m not a parent by any means, but just as a viewer I’m very much offended by that. I showed the video to my father and he said he wouldn’t want to see me doing that in the same outfit today and I’m 29. What I’m having a hard time understanding is what was the choreographer thinking when she came up with the dance and who picked out those slutty outfits, but most importantly, who are these girls’ parents that allowed their young child to participate in something like that? We can say that media and performers over sexualize everything, but at the end of the day its the parents’ responsibilty to guide their children in an appropriate direction. This is definitely an example of parenting FAILURE!!!

stephen ball

May 16th, 2010
9:51 am

@Ib you have the right to call me anything you like…but I can back up my view point with a professional child psychologist….you are backing up your view point with …what was it again? I never mentioned God at anytime so I am not sure from whence that reference came..I am a freaking idiot for even recognizing such unvalidated opinions as your.

HB

May 16th, 2010
11:36 am

lb, I don’t think anyone has taken jabs at the girls and most who have expressed shock and horror at the routine have acknowledged they have talent and have indeed worked hard. Seems to me the skimpy costumes and provocative moves DISTRACT from their talent and hard work. Do you really think those costumes and moves are necessary to show off their skills? And working hard at their craft means they must dress that way? I’m sure there will be people who would object to most anything involved with dance — leotards, high kicks, etc. But based on the responses here and the national attention this has gotten, it is not just a conservative fringe who finds this routine to be too adult for little girls. The parents and instructors showed bad judgement and poor taste.

lb

May 16th, 2010
11:38 am

it is a blog, Mr. Ball. I do not have to list my credentials. I assure you that they are noteworthy. Psychologists are a dime a dozen….you can get any number of them to back up most any opinion. I happened upon this site quite by accident. As I said before, excuse me-but your rhetoric is narrow-minded. Catlady reference to the Lord is beyond offensive. And finally to Ms. “Goose”, excuse me again, what professionals? Did you even read what I wrote? The direction given from these parents is beyond an “outfit”: they are being taught discipline, sacrifice, and hard work. And like the outfit or not, they are learning to have self-worth from their accomplishments. But you are right, better to buy video games, watch TV and get some Meth. And since you all have “professional” opinions, have about spending time blogging about Nashville, Immigrants , Afganistan Women instead of venturing into parenting skills on a sight run by a woman who seriously needs a dictionary. Do you even read Newsweek, Time, etc? Won’t bother you again; read the story, your opines, and thought necessary to give a different view from a well-educated Northeasterner.

HB

May 16th, 2010
12:42 pm

“But you are right, better to buy video games, watch TV and get some Meth.”

Wow! I am well educated and attended both northeastern and southern schools but had no idea those were the only options. 1) Work hard at dance but accept that that means you must dress and move in a way most would deem inappropriate for 8-year-olds or 2) sit in front of a screen all day and do drugs. I had no idea that children couldn’t learn the value of hard work and dedication through more modest dance routines and costumes or other activities. What a fool I was! Thank you so much for clearing that up, lb.

motherjanegoose

May 16th, 2010
2:19 pm

@ lb…just mentioned this to my husband and he brought up a great point…if ( as you say) Stephen Ball is an idiot, how is it that he has been in the dance business all these years and is still enjoying his profession….with people paying him to teach their children. I admire anyone who can make a living with their talent for ( did he say) 40 years. KUDOS Stephen Ball for sharing your passion and your values!

@ HB, I agree…are there not some children who have the option of learning the value of hard work and dedication through maintaining a strong GPA, sports, chores or even a part time job…thanks for your insights…

Warrior Woman

May 17th, 2010
9:52 am

This routine and cosutmes were completely inappropriate and disgusting beyond belief. And those of you supporting it need to have your heads examined.

[...] media frenzy surrounding the video of little girls dancing to the Beyonce Single Ladies song was another reminder that our culture pressures girls to grow up too [...]

Cheryl Savage

May 17th, 2010
2:47 pm

When I was a youger woman, I don’t think I would not have like it, I was more of a prude then.

At 54, with a 4 year old grand daughter who LOVES Beyone, Alicia Kyes, and Katie Perry, takes ballet and tap and can’t wait to start hip-hop: “when I’m six I can take hop-hop, Yia Yia!” I don’t see anything wrong with it. At most, the costumes might have been more glamorous (like Beyonce’s own) and less like something one would expect to see on “men’s clubs” waitresses.

Diane

May 17th, 2010
5:24 pm

Some of you need to watch how you speak. These are CHILDREN. Yes the video is disgusting, but these aren’t soon to be stripers, or Hoochies, or sluts as you say above. They are 7 year old CHILDREN! YOU should be ashamed of yourselves for speaking this way. How would you feel if someone said that about you or your children?

In any case, these CHILDREN don’t get to decide what to wear…their parents, dance teachers do.

If I ever heard any one speak the disgusting words you did about my child or another I’d tell you off.

And Michael, I work in a criminal defence office too…SHAME ON YOU for thinking that this will bring money in to you! You should lose your license! You are a horrible attorney…if that’s what you do.

That said, these children should not be victimised by their parents, dance teachers or predators on this web site calling them horrid and terrible names! You are Horrible and Disgusting, and I hope some day you feel ashamed of speaking like that about children…

Garfield

May 17th, 2010
5:37 pm

What’s next for the little girls? Pole dancing??? Their mothers should be ashamed to let their children perform like tramps!! Stick to tap dance and ballet which is more suitable for 7-10 year olds.

Sarah

May 18th, 2010
1:12 am

What is society coming to nowadays?
In 2010 we have 8-year-olds dancing and wearing things like this, Imagine what would come to us in say, 2030?
And no, it’s not about being ‘cute’ it’s about having a sense of shame.
What the hell are these parents thinking sending their little children out like this?
Back in the 1800’s it was ‘bad’ for women to go around not covering their head, in 1900, it was ‘bad’ for them to wear dresses over their knees, In 2010 it is ‘bad’ for girls to go around naked.
The point is, as time is going by, the value of modesty is decreasing at an astounding rate.
what is to be of our future generations?
To walk around almost stark naked?

Oh wait, we already ARE doing that.

Sarah

May 18th, 2010
1:38 am

@Ib, Your whole argument is based upon opinion, while Stephen and others actually have actual sources that can back them up. And as for “Psychologists are a dime a dozen”, these poeple work hard and went to school, and they have a profession in this area. So what if there are a lot of Psychologists in this world? It’s like saying just because there are too many people of the same profession, they are wrong?

And you are contradicting yourself. First you say that Psychologists give support to many different opinions, and that there are ‘a dime a dozen’ out there, while your whole ARGUMENT is based on your own opinion. And may I point out that the other opinions given by Psychologists is atleast somewhat educated? That atleast they have knowledge on what they are talking about. You, on the other hand don’t seem to be some kind of Psychologist,so naturally, Psychologists have a much, much greater advantage then you, in this field.

Debra J.M. Smith

May 18th, 2010
4:27 am

Most of the critics of these girls have no problem with showing the video, themselves. If they believe that the video is so bad, then why do they further the showing of it?

There was nothing sexual about the performance. People need to stop trashing these children and their parents!

Debra J.M. Smith
Journalist at InformingChristians.com

Tom

May 18th, 2010
1:08 pm

I am always amazed at how we categorize things, that we don’t think kids should do, as adult. If we don’t want kids to do them, this should indicate to anyone that there is something improper about it and if that is the case then why is it ok for adults to do it. I feel that it is disgracdeful and feel very sorry for children who have parents that allow the kids to do things like this video shows.

motherjanegoose

May 18th, 2010
9:56 pm

@ Debra J.M. Smith….perhaps am I missing something? I clicked on your web page ( right now) ;

http://www.debrajmsmith.com/

Isn’t SHEPHERD spelled with 2 e’s? I saw it on the middle right, above the picture and Bible verse. I only noticed it because we like to eat at SHEPHARD’S seafood in Clearwater Beach Florida and we always talk about how this is not the same spelling as in the Bible.

You may want to check into it….

Michael

May 22nd, 2010
12:37 pm

Wow, I watched the video and the girls outfits are cute and not revealing and the are amazing little dancers, to see such passion out of little children is amazing. Unfortunately there are certainly twisted minds out there in the world that would view these young babies are sex objects but I have news for you are children pass by the eyes of perverts everyday no matter how they are dressed. Its an ugly world with ugly people in it. In context this is an awesome performance by some very talented little girls, their costumes are appropriate for the venue. We would never condone this as appropriatie dress anywhere other than a performance venue. God bless them . ashame their awesome talent is being shrouded by twisted minds

steve fitz

May 30th, 2010
9:04 am

All this nonsense talk about two pieces…please copy and paste the following and review the video…. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sk11hLIft5Y&feature=related ……you mean to tell me that this white one piece is any less “SEXY” than a two piece??? Come on people!!! The bottom line is that Beyonce is an “IDOL” and these girls are only trying to be the next big thing. They are duplicating the slutty moves which Beyonce uses in her video. Too bad what they really need are “MODELS” role models that is. We need to ask ourselves how such sexually charged music and dance videos (Beyonce/Spears/ Michael Jackson) are not only rewarded in our society in the form of concert ticket and record sales but how has being more like Beyonce rather than Hillary Clinton become the norm for our children?

I encourage you to check out all the little girls on you tube who are dancing like strippers. I actually think the video you have all been ranting about is pretty mild compared to the one i just shared with you. Then again I also am not afraid to admit that it scares me that this girl looks sexy and even turns me on…reality check folks…most men either openly or privately most likely do too… which is why she should not be dancing like this…. in that outfit… so she can post it on Youtube…. where every day…. men who never looked at kids in a sexual way are being introduced to a new and exciting fetish they never knew they had.

If you ask me….parents who allow their daughters to wear low cut jeans, short booty shorts, skin hugging shirts, high cut bathing suits, and who allow them to post videos like this on Youtube are just as much to blame for the Rampant pedophile problem as the child pornographer that produces and peddles his porn. It’s like giving free crack to someone who really doesn’t want it…. but….. because it is in front of him he takes it. We need women to start being better role models. We need to return to a period of decency where little girls played with their dolls, planned tea parties and dreamed about becoming the first female American President. Because these days it seems little girls only dream about becoming the next female American Idol…who happens to wear slutty clothes and dances like a stripper witout the pole. I realize raising kids is much more complicated than that….but it sure would be a good start!

jon

June 17th, 2010
1:58 pm

i don’t approve of the dancing but saying that they were dressing like her you must not have seen the video she had a 1 piece swimsuit on so how is that they were wearing any where near to what she was wearing.

dC

July 9th, 2010
11:38 pm

Sexy dancing, but it would make the dance dam sexy hot is if you rip eachother’s bikinis off at the end!!!! Just suggesting.:)