author – activist – faculty – mom
Poor Cinderella never stood a chance in my house.
My mother bought the sunglasses for my three year old. Sparkly and pink? Approved. Rhinestone flower bows? Acceptable. Blonde Disney princess? Days numbered.
My mom is a reasonable feminist, but she’s a bit of a pushover when my daughter really wants something, especially anything cute and sparkly. When my daughter brought it home, I started scheming on how to get rid of it. I scratched at the edge of the yellow hair, and the paint chipped slightly. Excellent. I warned my daughter “This is a sticker,” I lied. “It won’t stay on the glasses.” My daughter seemed to understand. Apparently there had been a uv sticker on the glasses that came off. Good. Because I didn’t want my daughter to be traumatized when Cinderella disappeared.
I got the cotton and rubbed her out. As a feminist, I don’t believe in femicide, but that’s the thing. Cinderella and all these princesses are not real females, they’re fantasies that are transmitted from patriarchal minds to little girl’s minds. They’re doe-eyed cartoon faces on sexualized Barbie bodies. They seem to be for kids, but they’re the real kiddie porn. I don’t mind killing any versions of this sexist fantasy that get in range.
I can’t keep my girl from ever being affected, but I have a zero tolerance policy for white princesses. She came to me the other day asking for a princess doll. She wants Belle from Beauty and the Beast. I’m not sure whether to reject the request outright or to offer the option of Brave or the African American princess. But I’m on the fence about the black princess, too. She has the same porno body and romantic storyline. At least Brave is drawn like a non-sexual cartoon girl and she’s a badass. Cinderella, on the other hand, is out of the question. And now she’s off the glasses.