I write a lot about media impact on my daughters. I was on twitter this weekend talking about my oldest daughter having received a Moxy Girl doll for her birthday. The doll never made it into the house and I am not ashamed of that.
As a woman in the military, I am cognizant of the fact that I stand out. I am used to being in the minority but I have never used that as an excuse and I have never thought there was anything I could not do because I was a girl (except Ranger School and that’s a whole other story). I wrote for PBS Point of View last year on Women in the Military and I stand by the positions I took then. Nothing about being in command has changed how I feel about women in the military.
But watching this video upset me on an entirely fundamental level. I am aware of the media impact on me. In the nine months since my husband has deployed, I have literally sat by myself and watched TV two or three times. It stays off. My daughters watch very little TV and then it is highly restricted. No iCarly. No Hannah Montana. No Nickelodeon.
The video on this post illustrates why I am so strict about limiting my daughters exposure to media, both online and on TV. They will never have TVs in their rooms. They have no access to the internet. And the toys they have are not Bratz or Moxie Dolls or any of the scandalous toys geared toward our daughters.
What is truly frightening about the above video is that nothing there is untrue. It is not some man hating video talking about how women are oppressed, it is highlighting the media culture that you and I live in. It is highlighting the images and the videos and the messages that we as adults and our children, are exposed to every single day.
If you lived in a foreign country and knew nothing about America and saw this video, what would you say? What does this say about our culture that we call one of the most powerful women in the world a dominatrix? That, regardless of how you feel about her politics, we ask Sarah Palin if she’s had a boob job.
I’m not asking to change your mind. All I’m asking is that you watch the above video and think about the messages we surround ourselves with every single day.