Singer Mel C’s been making quite a splash this week by declaring she’s banned her 9-year-old daughter Scarlett from watching music videos, saying they sexualise women.
“I’m sick of seeing everybody’s bum. I’m over it,” she told Now magazine, adding that while music vids have always been on the risqué side, she reckons these days they’re “out of control”.
“My little girl is 9 and she loves pop music, she sings all the lyrics – she doesn’t know what they mean, thank God,” she added. “But I can’t let her watch the videos – they’re totally inappropriate.”
It’s true that, back in Mel C’s day, pop vids weren’t perhaps, quite as overtly sexy as they are these days. Her own band, The Spice Girls, were more feisty and fun than lascivious: Mel C herself was usually pretty well covered up in a tracksuit.
I have to say that when I read the singer’s comments, my first reaction was that doing anything, in my home at least, would be like trying to shut the barn door after the horse has bolted.
My 6-year-old’s been watching music TV since she was about 3 – particular favourites being Beyonce, Lady Gaga and the Pussycat Dolls.
Just like Mel’s Scarlett, she loves the tunes – and enjoys watching the pretty girls dancing. She’ll comment on how beautiful they are or how much she loves their outfits.
But could these videos be filling our kids heads with less than palatable ideas? That to be successful a woman needs to be pretty? That to be attractive she needs to be thin?
I must admit I was taken aback by a comment my daughter made into me in the swimming people a few months ago: “Mum, you need to be skinny to wear a bikini!”
It’s not something she’d have heard from me or her dad. Perhaps the message had seeped in from all the videos she’d watched of girls in skimpy outfits – every single one of whom was undoubtedly on the slender slide?
The (sort of) good news is that since the Trolls series came onto Netflix she’s not had the slightest bit of interest in watching anything else.
But I’m definitely going to think a bit more about what Mel C’s said.
What do you think?
Do you let your little ones watch pop videos – or do agree with Mel C that they’re over-sexualised? Do you think it would help for them to have an age rating like movies? Tell us in the comments below or over on Facebook