With the burgeoning success of posting videos on Vine, Instagram, Facebook etc, it is likely that you have come across some kind of short video of teenage girls doing something ’embarrassing’. Most likely you will see that these videos are accompanied by comments such as, “dumb sluts” / “would like to see them try that in my house” / “fuck this generation”. And so on because people need to type their own variation of the comment despite the 1000 comments already there.
I am more inclined to think these commentors are the disrespectful ones. Either they’ve forgetton what it’s like to be a tween or they were really, really boring. The videos I’m specifically talking about are the ones where young women do some kind of booty-shaking dance / choreographed dance moves / sing-a-long. They’ve probably spent a bit of time learning and practicing the moves.
Then of course, comes the filming of the dance and posting it online.
Cue: hateful comments. This is the part where I shake my head in disbelief. Do I think that thirteen year-olds should be posting videos of themselves online shaking their butts? Not really, no. Do I think people need to realise that young girls have been shaking their booties to dance movies together since the beginning of music? Yes.
The only difference is that girls post the videos online now.
I am baffled by this idea that the only girls who would dance to the current-pop songs are today’s girls or slutty girls when we’ve been dancing together for centuries.
I remember attempting to learn one particular dance from Center Stage with my friend when we were about 12. This was not the only time we attempted to copy the dance moves from movies. I was not good at dancing. We thought we were doing awesome. I’m pretty certain we would have filmed it if we could – and then probably posted it on our profiles if they existed when we were 12. In fact two years later another friend and I tried to recreate Kill Bill shot-for-shot with her parents video tape camera – we made it through about 3 scenes, poorly reenacted. It was so bad that we destroyed the evidence of this as adults but at the time we thought we were the coolest for making that.
Are girls doing sexy dance moves? Some of them are, yeah. Though I don’t remember if there were particularly sexy moves in Center Stage, you can bet that if there was, me and my friends copied them. The thing about being a teenage girl is that you will often do sexy dance moves; in the school corridor, alone in your room, at parties. Should young women be doing something sexy on camera for the public to scrutinize? Probably not because they’ll cringe when they look back in a few years. Should people insult and harass and bully those who do post silly videos? No.
The difference in this generation is not that girls dance, it’s that they post it online afterwards. So quit calling minor’s sluts and start educating young people on what’s appropriate to post online.