Of Cartoons and Kids

Barbie is something that is forever associated with little girls. There must be only few kids who’d be unaware of its existence, mostly those who are not exposed to things like television and the internet. Or those who consciously chose to ignore its existence, like me cuz the boys’ stuff looks more fun.

When i was a kid i also grew up under the influence of cartoon, fictional characters. While playing with cousins i was always April from TMNT or The Yellow Ranger from Power Rangers. Growing up we saw cartoons that have helped shaped our personalities and perceptions regarding life. We grew up thinking bad guys are something who should always be fought, good triumphs evil, we should save our planet from pollution, time travel and different other dimensions in the universe exist.

But the cartoons i see my younger cousins watching promote some other ideas in them. Take my youngest 3 year old cousin for example. She is an avid fan of Barbie cartoons and everything to do with barbie. One day i sat down and watched those toons with her and realized how materialistic they were. For example in one episode without glitter the whole world started coming to an end. So no wonder she says things like ‘when mummy will get me a gown, and a tiara and pretty shoes i will become a princess’. I grew up thinking that i am my daddy’s princess no matter what ! But she has this idea that a princess is one who wears a crown and has pretty clothes.

This… is wrong ! And it should be stopped. She sees a certain character taking everything from another and its right to her, why? cuz she seems happy having all those jewels and clothes. So ultimately she thinks that if by force or by crying she gets to ‘possess’  my other cousin’s clothes and hair pins or small things like that it is right ! when actually it is wrong !! but our dear elders just brush it off as ‘childhood mischief’. I’m not against kids behaving as kids but such viles should not be promoted.

There is a reason why Freud stressed on the personality development of a child till he/she is 5yr old. It really shapes how we perceive the world around us. So if kids grow up thinking that taking away from others their rights is okay, having 1000 clothes in your personal closet makes you pretty and everyone adores you that way, then what kind of disastrous society are we headed towards?

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