OMG. Did you get your J.Crew email a few weeks ago, open it up, and swoon at the impossibly cute little boy with gorgeous blond hair making eyes at his mother, J.Crew Creative Director Jenna Lyons? I totally did. But if you read the way the Daily Mail tells it, we all missed something crucial. Something dark and horrible.
The boy ... wait for it ... was wearing ... PINK nail polish. Imagine! A 5-year-old boy. With pink nail polish. How awful! How disturbing! How the hell did I not even notice that when I got the email? Oh, right, because he's a 5-year-old boy wearing pink nail polish. Not exactly earth shattering news in my house, where my husband wears purple, I've rocked a mohawk, and my own 5-year-old -- a girl -- plays with trucks.
In fact, the worst thing I saw in the whole ad was some totally cute clothes that I can't afford (CrewCuts, I love you but my wallet doesn't!). But Lyons is getting her butt handed to her by the British tabloid and child psychologists for the likes of Faux Fox News who claim she has destroyed son Beckett's life by daring to first indulge in the pink on his piggies and then publishing it in a major ad campaign. Well, Jenna, since you're going to hell, we might as well share a handbasket. As I mentioned before, little girl + trucks. Heck, the other day, I was poring over old photos and found my daughter in ... a Batman mask and cape with a cowboy hat. Quelle horreur!
While the fearmongers "experts" are carrying on about how Lyons is encouraging her son and others to live a "crossgender" lifestyle, all they're doing is perpetuating tired myths. Crossgender, or as it's better known in the LGBT community, transgender, isn't about wearing something usually identified with another gender at all. It's a biological sense that a person's uncomfortable with their gender, and yes, it can start as early as 2, or 3, or 4.
But as Cris Beam, mom of a transgender woman who has spent years working with transgender kids, pointed out to The Stir last month, kids generally DON'T look at things in life as being "gendered" until someone points it out to them. Pink nail polish is just that -- pink nail polish. Not "girly" but "pink nail polish." Ditto the trucks. Not a "boy toy" but "a truck." And even when it does become apparent, kids generally don't care ... at least not right off the bat. "A lot of kids do all kinds of gender play and then shift into their biological gender or 'assigned gender,'" said Beam.
Point being? The kids are alright ... and not just in Mark Ruffalo movies. They're just fine, in fact, until adults with bizarre and very restricted views of how kids should fit into their cookie-cutter ideals step into the fray.
So go back and look at that picture in the J.Crew ad, will you? What do you see? Do you see pink nail polish on a boy? Or do you see a little boy named Beckett, with beautiful blond curls, and a mom who looks like she is impossibly in love with her kid, in the very best way? Because that's what I see.
Image via J.Crew
Going to baseball games
Riding bike rides in the nice weather
Playing outside after work/school
Going for walks outside