Commodification of Children
Critics of child beauty pageants say the pageants promote children as products. Some describe it as a deal. Parents spend money on clothing, hair, makeup, and accessories in return for a cash prize. Law
Besides the laws that regulate child education, pageants are a relatively ungoverned program. Child contestants are not considered "working", so pageants are exempt from federal child labor laws. Pageants also have different rules, so it becomes hard to set a law that will cover every pageant. Lindsay Lieberman, the author of “Protecting Pageant Princesses: A Call for Statutory Regulation of Child Beauty Pageants” argues that there should be regulations on how child beauty pageants are run because the effects on children can be negative and damaging. In her article, Lieberman touches upon points that concern the lifestyles that children who compete in pageants have going on while competing such as stress and anxiety as well as problems they will have later on in the future such as depression, lowered self-esteem, and battling eating disorders. Study of 2005
In a study published in 2005, eleven women who had competed in beauty pageants as children were compared to a control group of eleven women who had not competed. They were compared in different areas, such as BMI, age and overall body satisfaction. In general, this limited study found that those who competed in beauty pageants as children were more dissatisfied with their bodies, and had greater impulse dysregulation and trust issues than those who did not participate, but showed no significant differences in measures of bulimia, body perception, depression, or self-esteem. The authors acknowledged their small sample size reduced the conclusiveness of their study. Sexualization
Main article: Sexualization in child beauty pageants
While the nature of child pageants is not inherently sexual, certain types of pageants create an atmosphere in...
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