Carol Platt Liebau: Girls Going Wild is Just Fine?

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Girls Going Wild is Just Fine?

Here is, frankly, an unbelievably stupid article from ABC News, titled "Some Say It's OK for Girls to Go Wild: Though Teens are Expressing Their Sexuality More Than Ever, Some Say It's Just Part of Growing Up, Not Cause For Alarm."

In other words, the article insists, don't worry about streetwalker-inspired clothes, "freak" dancing (where young people simulate sex on the dance floor) or any other inappropriate behavior. Just because girls are engaging in them, we're told, doesn't mean that they're having sex.

What a ridiculous argument. Whether or not the girls are actually having sex isn't, at some point, the issue. For example, every girl that's wearing revealing clothes isn't necessarily having sex -- but she's sending a message that she's indiscriminate about whom she permits to ogle her body. And the fact that such clothes are readily available sends a message that society thinks that's A-OK.

Taken together, the behaviors referenced in this story are pernicious -- not necessarily because they all ineluctably lead to sex, but because they send a message that sexual modesty is for losers, and that "sexiness" is the most important quality a girl can have. Such attitudes, whether overt or implicit, are hardly conducive to healthy attitudes toward sexual relationships later in life, and they hardly contribute to girls' self-respect or the valuing of young women for something other than their sex appeal.

As the article points out, rebellion has always, to some extent, been a characteristic of adolescence. The problem is that when ever more risque behavior is tolerated, teens have to go father and farther in order to rebel. The attitudes reflected in the linked piece demonstrate just how difficult it can be for young girls to find adults who are willing, unequivocally, to call for limits on their behavior.

ABC News and Sheila Marikar (the author of this sorry piece) should know better. Perhaps, even, Marikar needs to read my forthcoming book: Prude: How the Sex-Obsessed Culture Damages Girls (and America, Too!) due out this summer.


Blogger Marshall Art said...

When religion is forced to keep quiet, what has taken it's place? In terms of sexuality, nothing. There is only what an individual chooses to believe based on his/her feelings. Feelings are notoriously unreliable measures of how one should conduct oneself, be it sexually or otherwise. Feelings and how they are interpreted are generally self-promoting in the moment without thought to consequences, or at least without concern for them. So it's no surprise that our young have no direction or guidance that truly protects them in the arena of sexuality unless their parents are on their toes, and then that is regarded as prudish and overbearing. And now, not only do young girls dress like sluts, they think being regarded as one isn't a bad thing. May God have mercy on us for allowing this to happen.

9:03 PM  
Blogger The Flomblog said...

When I was raising my two kids (a boy and girl)I subjected them to horrible things:

- They both were in Scouting
- My wife and I have a traditional marriage
- I insisted on appropriate language and conduct
-They understood that when they were in public, they were held to a more stringent set of rules.
- My wife and I controlled their choice of clothing

Yes there were some difficult times, but today we have a wonderful relationship - they are 32 & 27 - plus I am close to all of their friends.

And I JUST did what I thought was right!

8:33 PM  

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