The Pink Princess Epidemic

Why is it that liking princesses and the color pink has become THE way to “be a girl?”  Everywhere you look, items sold to girls — clothes, toys, lunch boxes, bicycles– are all coated pink and purple…and of course “princess-y.”  Girls are being told “you like pink,” (and princesses, frills, sparkles, make-up, and dress-up), BECAUSE YOU’RE A GIRL.  Right…

Have you experienced this?  How did it make you feel?  Personally, I’m angry. Walking down the color coded toy aisles in stores makes me want to scream. Why aren’t girls given more choices?  Pink and pastel purple reign supreme.  YEP, that’s the dominant color scheme.  Is it too much to ask that girls be allowed to choose the colors they like best?

To be honest, I don’t hate the color pink, I hate that it has become THE ONLY CHOICE, an expectation, a requirement of girl-hood.  It represents a much larger problem in our country, limiting girls’ potential by creating a narrow box that we are expected to fit into.

And the focus of play is just as limited.  Girls are not expected to have any real ambitions to impact the world, no real goals or dreams.  This is clear by the toys options provided us

The focus is very “fluffy” …dolls, pop stars, pet shops, hotels, pony ranches, tourist stands…and princesses, princesses, princesses!  SERIOUSLY?  Girls aren’t allowed to be astronauts, firefighters, doctors, police officers, pilots, or super heroes (heroines)?  Apparently not..because you’ll only find those toys in the “boy” section of the store.  I find this incredibly insulting.

Society is failing us girls, by limiting our imaginations, aspirations, and our very selves.

Why are girls continuously sold short?  A baby is on the way. The couple learns, “It’s a Girl!”  What happens?  Bring out the pink blanket, skull cap, booties, and… the girl box, from day one.  From the baby shower onward a little girl’s world will likely be slathered in pink. It’s expected.  Why must we fight, girl by girl, out of this girl box?

Even when companies are called out by their clients (ie: the little girl who wrote to LEGO complaining about the lack of girls doing anything real) they inevitably miss the mark with each new opportunity. LEGO has done it again!  They have a new line called Lego ELVES,” four stereotypically “anglo-feminine,” (thin , pale skinned) dressed in purple, light blue, etc. No diversity, no choices.

Why is all this important?  Because if girls are routinely shown a very specific thing we are supposed to be, it is difficult to believe otherwise, and be true to ourselves.

I distinctly remember witnessing a cashier at a grocery store one day asked a little girl, “What color balloon do you want, pink?”  Not even a pause to let her answer!!! That is symbolic of the pink epidemic…with much deeper implications…

Thankfully the girl replied with, “orange.”  But not all girls will have the confidence to choose their own color.  Many will cave to the pressure to say, “yes, pink.”  …and compromise who they are for who society thinks they should be.

What will your answer be?

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