finish line raceJust when you thought there were enough events out there designed to make our daughters feel like crap, here comes another one! The Divas 5K is a "glamorous" race that allows teenage girls as young as 15 to run to win cosmetic body "improvement" prizes.

Got that, Mom? Your daughter may have trained her tail off to become fit enough to tackle a 5K, but someone out there still thinks she could benefit from some teeth whitening, laser hair removal, dermabrasion, and Botox!

Well, OK, so only the 18- and 19-year-old girls are eligible for the Botox, but the rest of the cosmetic procedures are still offered up to the younger girls as part of what the folks behind Divas 5K call a "girl power" event.

It's painful just thinking through the contortionist act it must have taken to twist something this positive upside down and inside out and come out on the other side with such a horrible message for girls.

At the finish line of a race is when a girl should be at her most in love with her body. She made it! She did it! Her BODY is a well-oiled machine.

So imagine getting handed a prize pack that tells her the very opposite? That it's all well and good that she just ran a race, but her teeth are looking kind of yellow, and what's with all that unsightly hair on her chinny chin chin?

You can talk all you want about the positive nature of a race for girls, but unfortunately the positives are completely wiped out by the appallingly negative message of these prizes.

Just imagine if this were the prize given to girls who had won a science competition? Or just taken their school's Quiz Bowl team to the finals?

There'd be a hew and cry that girls' brains weren't being valued. At least I hope there would be.

I wouldn't let my daughter compete in a science competition where the end goal was to pretty her up, as if she weren't already pretty enough, as if beauty were what mattered ... more than the skill it took to best the competition.

And so it goes with a race. Sure, it's great to get girls excited about exercise. But that should be the end goal here. Celebrating their body's accomplishments, not telling them their efforts are just not good enough.

If your daughter wanted to take part in a competition with cosmetic procedures as the prize, what would you say?

 

Image via comedy_nose/Flickr