FCKH8’s “F-Bomb Princess” video isn’t offensive—it’s exploitative.

Yesterday, for-profit T-shirt company FCKH8.com released a video called “F-Bombs for Feminism: Potty-Mouthed Princesses Use Bad Word for Good Cause.” The video features five angry girls, ages 6 to 13, who express outrage at society’s sexist treatment of girls and women while decked out in princess attire.

F-Bombs for FeminismThe video opens with the girls sweetly cooing, “Pretty!” while posing in their gowns and tiaras. But three seconds later, they switch gears and shout: “What the fuck? I’m not some pretty fuckin’ helpless princess in distress. I’m pretty fuckin’ powerful and ready for success. So what is more offensive? A little girl saying ‘fuck,’ or the fucking unequal and sexist way society treats girls and women?”

As the video progresses, the girls review the ongoing issues of inequality, systematic discrimination, and sexual violence faced by women in the U.S. They pepper these facts with more f-bombs, of course.

This combination of pretty pink princesses and relentless use of the f-word is potent and clearly calculated to provoke. And provoke it has: For the shock value alone, everybody’s talking about this video.

But in all the conversation about whether the video is offensive, we need to also consider the ad from a media literate perspective and consider FCKH8’s corporate interests.Was it right for FCKH8 to script a slew of swear words into an advertisement featuring young children?

If we follow the money and consider FCKH8’s motivations in producing “F-Bombs for Feminism,” it’s pretty clear that FCKH8 is in the wrong. Although the video purports to be “for [a] good cause”—presumably, to raise awareness of sexism—what they’re really promoting is their t-shirts. By putting FCKH8’s bottom line ahead of girls’ best interests, FCKH8 is being exploitative.

In fact, “F-Bombs for Feminism” betrays a social media marketing perspective devoid of ethics. The video’s ethos is so steeped in a “Generation Like” mindset that having the video widely “liked” and “shared” is clearly what matters most—resulting in the company’s decision to push girls as young as age six into the roles of cultural provocateurs.

FCKH8 tee in video FCKH8 teeAs a social media marketing strategy, it worked brilliantly. The video went viral almost instantaneously, prompting heavy traffic to FCKH8.com. There, t-shirts proclaiming “This is what a feminist looks like” and “Girls just want to have fun-damental rights”—as worn by the women appearing at the video’s end, of course—are up for sale.

Sadly, despite what major corporations and indie brands alike would have us believe, empowerment can neither be bottled nor sold. Commodification of feminism is not empowerment, and FCKH8 is not empowering girls or women through this video. Instead, they’re using girls as a means to a commercial end: to raise awareness of sexism to sell their t-shirts.

How ironic that a company that positions itself as feminist has no problem commodifying children in this way. Where is their sense of corporate responsibility? The ends don’t justify the means, and they never should have produced this ad.

I would feel differently if a video along these lines had been produced by girls as a way to find an audience for their authentic voices. If a group of young girls were passionate about combatting sexism in the U.S. and had decided to produce a video to raise awareness on the matter, and realized they could get their message out by swearing up a storm, more power to them—I’d applaud them for their creativity and media savvy.

But that’s not the case here. This video was scripted and slickly produced by a t-shirt company that evidently has no qualms about exploiting girls who are too young to understand the implications of the script they’re bringing to life.

So, my advice is this. Let’s stop debating whether we’re offended by little girls saying “fuck” and focus on the heart of the matter, instead: By putting adult words into children’s mouths, FCKH8 is exploiting girls in this advertisement. End of story.

A few additional thoughts (updated Thurs, Oct 23, 2014):

Since I wrote this piece yesterday, I’ve had some really terrific conversations with people who care about this issue—both with those who love the video and those who are critical of it. A few points I’d like to share:

1. Some readers have asked why I feel it’s a problem that FCKH8 is a for-profit t-shirt company. After all, they’re donating some of their profits to deserving charities and delivering cool tee shirts to people, right? Wrong. The slogans found on the FCKH8 t-shirts were appropriated from other feminist nonprofits. For example, the Feminist Majority Foundation has been selling “This is what a feminist looks like” tees since at least the mid-1990s. So despite their promises to support charities with their t-shirt sales, FCKH8 is actually siphoning money away from feminist charities by stealing their ideas.

Furthermore, quality charities have refused to take FCKH8’s money in the past, because FCKH8 is incredibly problematic. They’ve been accused widely of being transphobic (as a quick google search will show), and their anti-racist work is of dubious merit. For example, their response to Ferguson raised so much ire in the anti-racist community that Race Forward—one of the charities originally listed on FCKH8’s page—announced publicly that they were refusing donations from the company.

So to those who are saying that FCKH8 is a company that’s doing it’s best to promote social justice, and we should cut them some slack? No FCKHing way.

2. Some readers have argued that the girls aren’t being exploited because they’re old enough to understand the concepts in the video. But as well-regarded educational psychologist Lori Day weighed in below in the comments,

“The older girls probably understand, but the younger ones have gotten an acting gig. They probably have stage parents all too happy to put them on the internet. The ad could have been more effective without using the girls in this way and by letting their authentic voices shine through. Sometimes less is more, and this is one of those times. I found this ad to be clickbait on top of a vehicle for selling t-shirts, and that’s ok for adults if they want to do that, but 6-year-olds? I don’t think so. I’ve worked with kids that age for 26 years. They can understand some aspects of sexism, but much of this video is above their heads, the the f-bombs were more than provocative–they were exploitative.”

3. Some readers are insisting that anyone concerned about the video isn’t outraged enough about the structural inequalities described in the ad. However, outrage is not a zero-sum game—even though FCKH8 did some very savvy and disingenuous work in framing it that way, to pit viewers against one another. Think about it: It’s possible to be completely outraged by structural inequality AND ALSO find the video outrageous and/or exploitative.

4. Another commenter, Eliyanna Kaiser, raised a point in the thread below that I’d like to highlight, as it’s an important one to consider. She writes:

“Also, remember that diapered, African American Nebraska toddler who was the subject of a viral video that his family took (and foolishly posted) where he cussed up a storm? It wasn’t for a “cause” (or a for-profit enterprise), but that little boy was taken away from his mother by child services. It’s really weird how this is all meta-debate about whether or not it’s cute and empowering to watch little girls swear or whether it’s exploitative of them — but in the context of poor people not doing it for profit it’s the kind of shit that gets your kid taken away.”

In other words, there’s race, class, and consumerist privilege at play in the fact that FCKH8 expects to be lauded for having kids play-act in ways that gets actual kids of colors removed from their parents’ homes.

5. The blog “The Belle Jar” made a post that elaborates in greater detail as to why the FCKH8 ad is exploitative, and I highly recommend it. Here’s a preview:

“There is for sure nothing feminist about having girls as young as six years old discussing rape and sexual assault; I would hope that at that age, most kids have never even heard the word rape, let alone had to recite rote facts on it for an audience of thousands, maybe even millions. I feel sick that these children are being taught about subjects like rape just so that a t-shirt company can make a provocative advertisement. The point that especially crosses the line between “this is problematic” and “I want to flip a table” is the moment where the five little girls spout off the statistic that one in five women will be raped in their lifetime, and then ask which of them it will be. Having a little girl demand to know if she’ll be raped just so that you can sell a few shirts is so far beyond the realm of what should be acceptable that I have no words for it.”

6. Still think there’s nothing of merit to complain about in the FCKH8 “F-Bombs for Feminism” ad? Check out this great list that reader Deanne Carson devised and posted publicly in the Women You Should Know facebook thread about my post:


Thanks for reading and engaging, everyone—this has been a really informative conversation.

P.S. I’d like to thank The Christian Science Monitor and Women You Should Know for cross-posting this piece, and Bitch magazine for sharing this post with in yesterday’s Feminist News Round-Up.


Rebecca Hains is a media studies professor at Salem State University. Her book, The Princess Problem: Guiding Our Girls Through the Princess-Obsessed Years, is now available from retailers including Amazon.

Rebecca is on Facebook and Twitter. If you enjoyed this post, you may follow Rebecca’s blog by hitting the “follow blog” button at rebeccahains.com. 

281 Comments on “FCKH8’s “F-Bomb Princess” video isn’t offensive—it’s exploitative.

  1. This, a million times this! I knew there was something that bothered me about this particular video (which I have yet to watch because I’m disturbed by the thought of having to watch it), it would be that the company is exploiting the kids and gender equality for profit. Well said professor, I’m going to re-blog this post if it’s okay with you! 🙂

      • Wow! The Dems War on Woman against the Republicans has flipped and they now have the pleasure of defending their War on Children or War on Young Girls…….

      • If you are unable to understand this video it would simply be that many folks are “disturbed” by truth. The use of children is to grab the attention of viewers to the existence of several overlooked topics. I am the mother of 4 children, two of them being female. Both of my daughters would have fully understood the goal of participating in this video and been capable of distinguishing the daily use of profanity from the use of profanity to make a point clear. Those of you that object to the profanity and the making of money from the sale of t-shirts should think about that every time you turn on your televisions. I have seen much worse behavior in that context and therefore chose to stop watching television 10 years ago. Give your energy to something that is truly harmful to children and humanity as a whole. Here is a few that you should get going on, trafficking of women and children, raping of our earth for profit. Now, quit with the soapbox drama and go give your energy to really making a difference!

        • No excuse, it is exploitative, would you enjoy being raped for a campaign against rape just to be shown how awful rape is? You probably dream about it with gusto, since you enjoy exploiting others for your own benefits, it means you like being exploited. Maybe this is why you are unable to understand this concept, or maybe it is because you are a manipulative narcissistic person who can’t see beyond her own arm length, because it is not in her interests.

    • I can’t really see how this video was exploitive. From what I understand the people who made this, FCKH8, snuck in a few of their products into the video – so what? If FCKH8 had made just a commercial similar to this that was only about their products how would that have been wrong? As it is they made a cool video that was 90% on issue and barely mentioned their T-shirts. Am I not understanding things?

      • I get where you are coming from Vivaleta, but from what I see Rebecca had a solid argument. I won’t contest things with you either way, but I am confused as to why you replied to my comment instead of leaving a regular comment on Rebecca’s blog.

        • Sorry for commenting under your comment. It was just an error.

          • Meaning, that there are far more proper and appropriate was to get the point across. Like the commercial that asks girls of all ages and boys of all ages, whats it like to run like a girl, throw like a girl, etc. then at the end, it’s impactful and you remember it.
            This video, you really had to listen to what they were saying, except for the curse words, you could definitely hear them, so the message gets totally lost.
            Maybe a few curse words, but this was way over the top and never believe it is okay to tell your child it’s not okay to curse, but it’s okay if you get paid for it.

      • Well, it’s really not right to use young children as mouthpieces for an agenda they don’t understand. They’re people, not props, and it’s not ethical to use them in a video specifically to be provocative when they’re too young to understand the implications.

        • It’s also not right to assume they don’t understand the agenda.

          • I’ve got a 6-year-old child, and I’ve worked extensively with children in this age range. It’s pretty unlikely that the younger girls in the ad really understand the agenda in more than a superficial way.

            • I completely disagree. As I outlined in another comment, as I know first hand that children this young absolutely do understand! My nine year old loved it and these kids were 6-13, absolutely old enough to understand and embrace the idea. I personally was arrested for civil disobedience the first time at 12, and I was thrilled to participate in the protest, having just read John Hershey’s “Hiroshima” and eager to join the anti-was movement!

            • Because you haven’t provided information to your children on such concepts at a young age, doesn’t mean the rest of us haven’t. By age 6, children are quite capable of understanding the concept of fairness: sexism, racism. I also engaged my daughter in discussions on nationalism, economic policies, media, and politics from a young age. The children in this video are definitely old enough to understand what they are saying.

              • But the video goes beyond sexism and racism (which my child does understand) and has the girls ask viewers which of them will be raped. That’s a developmentally inappropriate concept for a six-year-old. Six-year-olds should be learning about bodily autonomy and that it’s not okay for people to touch them in certain ways, but that’s about as far as it should go in most cases. Anyhow, I updated my post above with more details on this and other points–I hope you’ll have a look! Thanks again for reading/commenting. I do appreciate it, even if we disagree on this point; it’s clear we share the goal of wanting what’s best for girls and women.

            • Agree Rebecca Hains, children do not understand and definitely the younger girls do not. Children imitate, and the problem with that is, if you do not balance it, lead by example, most children get a very warped picture/distorted view of the actual facts.
              Granted, some children progress differently through the stages of growing, but overall, most do not understand.
              Take TV shows, very disappointed with how they promote little kids to like boy’s, want a boy, and they have them dress very adult sometimes (adult like they are going to a club).
              This sends the message to young girls of needing a guy in her life and that is her only goal, watch some of these shows (especially on the Disney Channel), terrible.

        • I firmly believe that young girls fully understand the messages that are being sent by this video. They live with it everyday, see it on tv, hear about it from boys and society. What are the implications? Given a voice, what if one of the implications is that they grow into feminists/humanists that work towards true equal rights?

          • Melissa, I’m an educational psychologist, and I disagree. The older girls probably understand, but the younger ones have gotten an acting gig. They probably have stage parents all too happy to put them on the internet. The ad could have been more effective without using the girls in this way and by letting their authentic voices shine through. Sometimes less is more, and this is one of those times. I found this ad to be clickbait on top of a vehicle for selling t-shirts, and that’s ok for adults if they want to do that, but 6-year-olds? I don’t think so. I’ve worked with kids that age for 26 years. They can understand some aspects of sexism, but much of this video is above their heads, the the f-bombs were more than provocative–they were exploitative. I agree with Rebecca.

            • How would you now what kind of parents they have and how they feel? Assumption.

            • Lori- The concept of fairness is understood at a very young age. Even 6-year-olds are capable of understanding the content in this video. I started analyzing media messages with my daughter when she was abt 5. We discussed the meaning of the Pledge of Allegiance when she was forced to recite it daily in kindergarten. If a child is capable of grasping the concept of Nationalism (and she did), they are certainly able to grasp the concept of fairness/sexism. Too many adults underestimate children.

            • OMG, did Kay with no credentials given just post a reply in an effort to educate an Educational Psychologist with 26 years of experience? Surely I read that wrong. I think I need some coffee.

            • Kay-

              How did they force you to recite the Pledge of Allegiance? Didn’t you just refuse to do it? Or did you underestimate yourself because you were a child?

            • This is mostly a response to Kay’s notions below. There is a difference between understanding the words or even the sentiment of something you’re saying, and actually understanding what it means. You used as your example the pledge of allegiance, suggesting that after enough repetition students begin to understand the pledge, as well as nationalism. I feel that couldn’t possibly be further from the truth. In fact, as long as I can remember when the pledge WAS recited in schools, it would be done so in this drone of un-enthused children doing something they don’t want to do because it’s easier then going to the principal’s office. That they continued to state the pledge does not mean they support it, or even fully understand it. With understanding comes questioning. One does not offer a pledge to something they understand. One researches something they understand to understand it better. Hell full grown adults don’t even understand the pledge. Christians are getting their undies all knotted up over the notion that non-Christians don’t want to pledge to a country that resides “under God”. Those 2 words alone are what Christians are defending more then the notions of national loyalty… and yet the pledge is a blasphemy to any devout Christian. To pledge to the flag is to declare a “false idol”, one of the bible’s biggest sins.

          • Exactly. Here in South Africa babies as young as 3 months are raped. OFTEN. And I wish this was made up… Of course you don’t want to hear about it and especially don’t want kids to know about it, but ignoring it isn’t going to make it go away. Feeling ‘uncomfortable’ with kids using swear words is exactly what the video is saying – The irony of people reacting to the swearing instead of the abuse women go through has somehow been lost or just ignored…!?!?!

      • You’re an idiot…plain and simple. If you don’t get it, you’re as sad as the ones who made this awful video.

      • Meaning, that there are far more proper and appropriate was to get the point across. Like the commercial that asks girls of all ages and boys of all ages, whats it like to run like a girl, throw like a girl, etc. then at the end, it’s impactful and you remember it.
        This video, you really had to listen to what they were saying, except for the curse words, you could definitely hear them, so the message gets totally lost.
        Maybe a few curse words, but this was way over the top and never believe it is okay to tell your child it’s not okay to curse, but it’s okay if you get paid for it.

    • Sooo, you are judging something that you have not seen…….?

      • I am judging something I do not wish to see, and the provided synopsis reafirms that I don’t want to see it. I COULD watch it if I wanted too and let you know my thoughts, but I’m not someone who mansplains stuff to women regularly.

        • It’s a three minute video. It’s INCREDIBLY ignorant of you to make judgements about a video you haven’t seen. Have you heard of confirmation bias? That’s what’s going on here. Pick up a book, (or watch a video), EDUCATE yourself before forming an opinion. People like you are why we have such an ignorant, uninformed society.

          • Okay, I watched the video and it promoted strong points. I’m not really offended by it all. It’s a “shock and awe” kind of marketing to get the point across. I am still seeing what Rebecca discussed about the product placement though. I support Feminism, education, and equality in culture. What I don’t support are judgmental and fucking rude trolls like you who accuse people they don’t even know of being ignorant just because they happen to disagree with you. Lastly, I never said it was wrong for the girls to swear. I’m 100% okay with them having potty mouths. Please think twice before you put words in my mouth and judge a stranger.

            • You support feminism because you’ve been neutered & emasculated. You’re probably wearing a dress right now.

              • @Feminidiosts: Three things: me having a feminine side isn’t a threat to your masculinity, your profile name proves to me you’re just another troll, and the fact that you stooped to insulting me proves that you have nothing intelligent to debate with me. Kindly go fuck yourself.

    • It’s remarkably close-minded of you to make judgements and share articles/ blog posts about a video you HAVE NOT WATCHED. Regardless of whether or not the video was made to sell shirts, it is empowering young girls and women. And the shirts are going to a good cause. These little girls already knew the word “fuck” (unless they were extremely sheltered). It is a WORD – it is not harming them by saying it, and this was probably a process of learning when it is okay to use such words and when it isn’t. These girls were not “harmed” by making this video. On the contrary, they learned about feminism and stood up for something. THAT’S empowering.

    • I agree they are exploiting kids for profit. As sad as that is they also twist their “Facts”. The 1 in 5 girls will be asaulted or rapped comes from a survey where the question was asked if women have had sex while drunk, high, or passed out and unable to consent. 60% of those who answered yes said it was not rape but they left that out.
      Do they consider it rape if a guy is drunk or high and has sex? Why the sexist double standard?
      The pay difference also is twisted, they fail to consider many women choose to leave the workforce for family. not because they have to but because they choose to.
      The recent rise in feminist media is just a setup for Hillary’s 2016 presidential plans. They are setting it up just like they did for Obama… If you don’t vote for him It’s because you’re a racist.. except this time it will be if you don’t vote for her you’re a sexist and hate women.
      I feel sorry for these young girls, not only is the information they are saying misguided and the manner the message was delivered is distasteful. It reminds me of the technical virgin videos that caused the child actor to later lose her job on a childrens show once the producers were alerted to the video.

      • I’m glad you agree the video was unethical. I can’t really speak for the child actors since I don’t know them or show biz that well, but I would hope that they could still have careers. Now it’s pretty clear from your comment that you’re a Conservative, and I’m guessing you’re also a Men’s Rights Activist. I know I previously judged the video before watching it, but I’d like to see your source about the rape survey and the information on the wage gap before I make solid decision on your argument. And as a matter of fact, Feminists do sympathize for male rape victims. I sympathize since rape is a horrible thing that should never happen to anyone. What Fems don’t sympathize with are MRAs using male rape victims to overshadow the fact that rapists are the problem and main cause of rape. My original post didn’t have anything to do with the election either. To me the main indicators of sexism and racism are behaviors and how people in power treat the groups that normally receive those types of prejudice, so I’m not going to generalize that all republicans (or men) are racist and sexist. However, many Americans (Dem or Republican) still think race and sexism are non issues, and they don’t do enough to fight the problems. Lastly, I respect your freedom to speak your mind and follow your beliefs, just understand that I will continue following my own beliefs.

    • Wow, how do you know how well something is said on a video you haven’t watched? way to be objective dude

      • You’re about six months late to this conversation, Drew. I watched the video and posted a response on my blog after watching the video saying I understood the message ,but disagreed with the methodology. Don’t jump to conclusions yourself.

  2. Reblogged this on Kevin Card and commented:
    I studied with Rebecca Hains as my time as Journalism undergrad at Salem State University on how to do graphic design, in my post graduate time I also discovered Hains is an excellent Op-Ed writer. Just to clarify, I have yet to watch the “F-Bombs for Feminism” video, and I likely won’t do so since it’s exploitative.

    • I’m replying here because to be honest I don’t know how to reply. Curiously the filmmakers use cute girls. Maybe he could have made his point by using fairly unattractive, overweight girls. Oh wait, that certainly would never do.

      • I’m curious as to whom you mean when you say “he”. If you mean me then I don’t have the resources and time to make a viral video pointing out sexism. But I do agree, the media will always favor skinny and traditionally “pretty” actors and actresses to help sell their product better. There are efforts to increase awareness and acceptance for models of different body weights and appearances on the web, they just never got as much attention because the consumer plays favorites and those videos weren’t as sensationalized as “F-Bombs for Feminism”.

      • What the hell man?!? You actually judge little girls by their ‘attractiveness’??!?! Perhaps you might want to have a look in the mirror before pointing a finger.

        • I can’t speak for Greg up there, but my criticism was aimed at the general media rather than the girls. The girls are just actresses in the video, it’s really unfair for anyone to pin anything on them personally.

  3. This was an interesting take on the video, and compeltely see your point. Watching the video, and not knowing much about FCKH8 as a company or organization, I assumed that the video was to raise awareness. They do kind of sneak the T-shirt thing in at the end, and make it seem as though they’re not interested in making money off of them, but in donating the money to charities. But if they really cared about that, they would donate all proceeds to the charities. Anyway, I wrote an article about this video too, mostly asking people for their opinions, I would love it if you took the poll! http://lilithinlilies.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/viral-right-now-pretty-potty-mouthed-feminists/

    • Uh, no, you can make a product intended to raise money for charity and still keep some of the proceeds. It’s called “I might have a charitable bone in my body but I still have to eat.” Only millionaires and billionaires can afford to donate ALL the proceeds. Everyone else has bills to pay.

      The entitled notion that someone involved in a worthy cause should give their *everything* to that cause while their own lives go neglected can die a quick death any day now. I haven’t just seen this in politics, either–I’ve seen it in religious groups. (You know those Christian churches that raise all that money just to build fancy buildings? Yeah, leaders in some other religions are never going to see that kind of money. They’re having to hold fundraisers for medical bills, but they’re bad if they charge for a wedding.) It’s very destructive.

      That’s a separate issue from whether FCKH8 is being exploitative here, of course.

      • You do realise that not-for-profits don’t donate ALL proceeds, right? As in, they keep some of the money for overheads, wages, advertising, future fundraisers, etc. The difference is the leftover money will be funneled back into the cause, rather than into someone’s private bank accounts.

        • I’m not calling you ignorant (nor am I saying you aren’t. I don’t know either way, or don’t care). But I will take a moment to correct one inaccuracy. FCKH8 is a for-profit company, as they clearly state on their own website.

          • The author mentions that in this article, which is what I was replying to in my first comment. It’s tiring that unless you explain literally everything you’re thinking and the way you come to a certain conclusion, everyone thinks you’re dumb and your opinions were not thought out. They are, I just don’t need to write every little step of my thought process to validate my opinion to strangers. Anyway, if they were a not-for-profit, then yes, I would assume they would need to keep some of the money they make on the shirts for the cost of their production, peoples salaries, etc. But because they are a for profit organization, then they clearly don’t need to make money off of these shirts- they want to, and in that way they are exploiting not just the girls, but the cause of feminism, to make money. Because they are for profit, they clearly could afford to have a viral video with all proceeds minus production costs going towards women’s charities. Either way, I welcome all opinions and am taking a poll of people’s reactions to this video:http://lilithinlilies.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/viral-right-now-pretty-potty-mouthed-feminists/

    • So as long as you get your message out, nothing else matters. WOW!

  4. Thank you! I finally watched this video last night, and was really bothered by it… and not because of the information they were presenting (which I knew, and was plenty bothered by already). But I hadn’t been able to quite put my finger on what it was. While the very first use of swearing was provocative (and I thought effective), the continued, gratuitous use bothered me and then the sudden appearance of T-shirt sales undermined the ENTIRE THING.
    You really hit the nail on the head!

    • You’re welcome! When I clicked on their website and found not a blog post, but links to buy t-shirts, it all clicked with me. It so completely undermines their empowerment rhetoric. Anyhow, thank you so much for reading!

      • You need to stop hating on this video, because as it makes money for selling t-shirts and what not, the underlying point is it still raises awareness. So instead of tearing it up like this, maybe just highlight that it is trying to sell something. That’s just the shitty consumerist life that is america, at least their putting a good message with their advertising.

        • The thing is, messages like this aren’t constructive. They’re destructive. Any notion that “women are being exploited” gets completely lost when the video features future women already being exploited, regardless of the reason. Now when profit comes into play, and they reason for them being exploited is for financial gain, that completely decimates any facts they attempt to present about the “exploitation of women”.

          But that’s just what’s on the surface. Shock and awe campaigns like this often lead to fast, immediate responses based purely on emotion. “I can’t believe this is going on. I’m going to support this cause”. The moment they hit the website and find nothing but tee shirts on sale, no facts no education no solutions to the problem just a way to spend 20 bucks on a vague message, people start to do their own research and open their own forums. Some people take the message they saw and ran with it, creating blogs and “newsfeeds” that use the information gathered in this video as a “source”. But MOST people, especially when they see the only way to “support” this cause is financially, will start to review the statistics that were brought up, and find lies and inconsistencies with their statements. For example, the notion that the average woman makes 23% less for doing the same work as a man was debunked a long time ago. In fact, some of the most powerful and financially successful people in this country are women. 1 out of 5 women will be raped by a man? That’s a flat out lie. Moreover, it’s been proven in this country that sexual assault by a woman against a man (which wasn’t even brought up by this video) is quite prevalent in this society. It might not QUITE be as high as the violence against women, but it’s also on the rise fast. Now, there is NOTHING good about rape. Nothing anyone can say can advocate the practice. But my notion on that is rape is bad enough on its own without having to lie about it to make it seem worse, and if they’re going to make this video under the pretenses of “equality”, then MEN need to be represented equally as well.

          In what world is telling a girl she looks pretty an insult? A woman can’t have brains AND beauty? I’ve likely told every girl I ever dated at some point in another how beautiful I think they are, or how pretty they look today, something along those lines. I’ve also told girls I’ve known and/or dated to stay in college and stop fucking up their grades. That they’re too smart to settle for mediocrity. I don’t tell women how to dress, I don’t rape (or even approach women) based exclusively on how they are dressed, and I don’t ogle women because they’re wearing something revealing. I will notice if a girl looks particularly good… one of my failings in being a man I suppose, but find me one woman on this planet who has never looked at a person (based on their sexual preferences) and thought to themselves “Damn they look good”.

          So yes, indeed. Fuck this sexiest shit. Fuck a society that will give millions in the name of “Breast cancer research” completely ignoring any form of cancer, including prostate and testicular cancer, to help women. Fuck this society that dictates that man should never hit a woman under any circumstances, even if the woman hits you first. Fuck this society that is teaching children that it is impossible for them to go out there and grab a chunk of life. That it’s impossible for a girl to go to college, get a good job, work your way up and become successful. Fuck this society that dictates that to effect change, you need to be loud, profane, have a video on the internet, and a tee-shirt to sell instead of effecting change by voting, by working hard, by being a functional member of society instead of a dysfunctional one. But more then anything, fuck this website for putting such hateful words in the mouths of children who don’t even know what they’re saying or what it means. No, I don’t mean the F word, although that’s one small part of it. I mean the “message” that these children are “supporting” with their words. All they are doing is alienating children to act on this cause with emotion and with verbal violence, and not even teaching these children why the cause is “just”. Hell, ask Oprah Winfrey (A minority female to boot) how much “the man” is holding her down.

            • And with that comment you did more damage to women than that video did.
              “Girls being ‘exploited’ to promote rights for women.” Can you see the stupidity in that sentence?? How is this so difficult to understand? They are standing up for THEIR FUTURE SELVES. So what if it was scripted?!?! In 15 years those girls will all be proud of that video and hopefully they will have more equality by then because of awareness they assisted in creating. Hopefully none of them would have experienced sexual abuse… But that seems unlikely. I’ve mentioned this before. BABIES get raped in South Africa. 4 month old BABIES. How bout expending energy on that topic instead of moaning about 5 little girls swearing.

        • Carolyn, the problem with the video isn’t just that they’re selling t-shirts (whose slogans they stole from others, by the way). It’s that they’re not foregrounding girls’ authentic voices. They’re putting words in their mouths, turning real children into mouthpieces for an agenda they likely don’t understand–and the only reason they selected such young children to convey the message was to be provocative, to produce clickbait, to go viral. That’s exploitative.

      • I can agree with this completely. It was an interesting way to present the dilemma, but there was no more information on the website at all. It is great that some money is donated, but I wonder if they’re just doing this to feed off people who care.

  5. Unfortunately, the “F” word appears in every film, cable episode and music media. It has become as common as hello! Yet the N word is used by everybody, but when it is from middle society, it is forbidden to us? What happened to freedom of speech and the right to do do? Is this what little girl princesses are doing now? What’s next 4 them, bare naked photos as a protest. This world and government has failed every hard-working tax payer!

    • I think the notion is not about the use of the F word per se, but encouraging children to use the word and to act on anger and hatred. Moreover, it’s someone else’s hatred they’re spewing. That’s what offends me. Children swear I’m willing to accept that, and even laugh at it sometimes even when it’s not appropriate. But to me what’s offensive is, these children have no concept of what it is they’re being used to “fight” for. They spout stats that have no contextual meaning to them. Facts fed to them in the form of scripted lines that they haven’t the capacity to verify or deny with any form of research. It’s teaching people to take what’s said at face value, and that every study ever conducted is 100 percent accurate. That has the side effect of encouraging people to fall in line and become good little automatons. These children should be questioning life. They shouldn’t be regurgitating rhetoric written by adults, they should be expanding their minds with ideas like thought, and research. Disney and “Pretty princesses” aren’t the reason children aren’t opening books. It’s parents, television, and cell phones that are putting an end to recreational reading. It’s not about the way the message is worded. A person can use F Bombs, the N word, or any other form of speech and still get a positive message across. To ME, it’s about a misguided message. Encouraging people to complain and assign blame instead of putting forth the effort to better themselves.

  6. My mom shared this on my Facebook wall today and asked me what I thought. My first point was exactly this, that it’s an ad using children as a means to sell t-shirts and that’s uncomfortable. There is so little education in the video, that it’s just a means to an end. I fear that this girls have received little to no education about the words and ideas they are being asked to spread, and the realities of aligning oneself with the feminist movement. I was also made uncomfortable by the statistics the video uses. Little Caucasian girls and little African American girls will face very different realities when it comes to their chances of sexual assault, and the lack of acknowledgement of that in the video isn’t right.

    • Jamie, that’s very well said. I wonder whether FCKH8 really worked with the girls on the concepts, and gave them information about feminism and sexism in an age-appropriate way, or whether they just taught them the script and helped them act it out? I asked my 6-year-old to give a performance like this, he could pull it off, but his comprehension of the topic and the ramifications of his participation would be limited, at best. I would never ask such a young child to be a mouthpiece for a cause in this way. Kids are people, not props.

  7. I appreciate your opinion, but disagree, you have no proof that the girls don’t agree with what they were saying, and you are taking the term “exploitation” very far. By your standards ALL CHILD ACTORS EVER are exploited because they are saying words written by an adult. Really? I think you are encouraging the belief that “curse words” are offensive and “not lady like”, which is kind of exactly the point that this video is supposed to be making. they’re not offensive, they’re just words, and we have bigger things that we can be worrying about. Facts that are so simple to understand that children can grasp them. I don’t agree with all of FKH8’s marketing, but I though this was actually very well done. People get angry with women talking about feminism too much? Maybe they will listen to kids.

    • Thanks so much for reading and for your feedback! I really appreciate it. I don’t believe that I’m taking the term “exploitation” too far, however. This situation–of positioning young girls not as actors, but activists in an ad that isn’t completely honest about its status as an ad in the first place–fits the dictionary definition perfectly.

      Definition of EXPLOITATIVE: exploiting or tending to exploit; especially: unfairly or cynically using another person or group for profit or advantage .

      • So as long as they are actors that don’t act in anything you deem activist, that’s OK?

    • It’s not about the swearing to me. It’s about the “message”, and no. They do not understand it. It’s unreasonable to expect an 8 year old to understand what rape even means, and why it’s so traumatizing, unless they’re been through it. They are not old enough to understand what these statistics mean, nonetheless do individual research to verify or deny their claims. Child actors might be “exploited”, and in many cases that does become problematic (far too many child actors have grown up to be adult addicts and/or criminals) but in the end they are not being twisted to believe in a cause and being used to further that cause for profit. They are JUST acting. There is a world of difference.

      • Unreasonable to expect that an 8 year old could be raped, sexually assaulted, or molested? Or even know what it may mean? I disagree. It happens more than one can possibly imagine, sadly.

        • Comprehension much? I will quote what i said verbatim. ” It’s unreasonable to expect an 8 year old to understand what rape even means, and why it’s so traumatizing, unless they’re been through it.”. Now that being said, it’s unreasonable to expect that these girls have been the victim of rape to discuss it reasonably and rationally. Even if “it happens more then one can possibly imagine” it’s still not commonplace enough to look at a child and rightly believe she could have gone through that. Moreover, children who have been abused withdraw, they don’t project. They don’t become the loud and proud boisterous children you see in this video. I’m just not buying it.

          • I have a hard time believing the casting directors screened for girls who had been raped and molested. It’s true that girls right here in the US are raped and molested far more than people are willing to admit, but to say that this means that the girls in this video “get it” is a red herring.

            • That is essentially my point. IN fact I have a hard time believing that casting directors even looked for “troubled youths” of any form. They clearly sought out youths that would best provide the image they were looking for. The “Sassy youngster” that might one day be a victim. Yet that proved to be their failing, as the people they chose would never be “silent victims” no matter the crime committed against them. Yes, that’s going by appearances, but it’s also going basked on psychology. “victims” would not present themselves in such an up-front light.

    • Seeing how the majority of child actors become well rounded adults helps to validate your point.

  8. Thanks for framing it this way. I first saw the video this morning, and felt torn between appreciating its sassy-ness and wondering at the experience of the girls who were cast to say f*ck over and over. Ultimately, it feels like cheap way to get a message out.

    • To me, even the “sassyness” presents a problem. That’s a trait that’s generally considered to be feminine, and this video certainly puts it in a feminine light. So in effect, this video is promoting the notion that it’s acceptable for them to use girls and their “sassyness” to convey their message (for profit), but it’s not OK to treat a lady like a lady, even if it’s with good intentions. I don’t know about the rest of you, but if I was on a date with a girl and I opened the car door for her and she said “I don’t need a MAN to do that for me. I can open my own door” I would say “good then you can pay for your own meal” drop her off at the restaurant, and drive off assuming that as a strong woman she can exercise her right to pay for a cab ride home, or take the bus. I ain’t got time for notions like that. A reasonable woman would take the gesture as an attempt to be polite, perhaps even chivalrous, offer a polite thank you and move on. Yes, even a strong liberated woman. But I digress. My problem here is, this is effectively teaching children it’s OK to grow up a sassy, strong woman who is vocal about the problems that she sees rather then teaching them to be hard working dedicated employees, and that any repercussions that arise as a result are just an attempt to keep women down. I’ll probably get some backlash for this one, but if I had an employee that came to me and voiced her concerns with the “sassy attitude” that these children portray, I would fire them on the spot for insubordination. Regardless of the offense against her. Naturally I would look into her claim, especially if it was something clearly illegal, and likely fire the person/people responsible for the offense against her. But in the wake of comments like “i don’t make as much as my male counterpart”, I’d answer that with “your male counterpart isn’t in here giving me an attitude telling me how to run my business. He’s out there doing his work making me money. Maybe you should try that on your next job.”

      • I’ve been reading your misguided comments Lawrence and You are not a good advocate for women or girls. Chivalry in one sentence regarding your willingness to be polite and open doors juxtaposed against it’s okay to hit a woman if she hits you first and all of your stats that women are being paid fairly now are wrong minded. You are minimizing rape. You may reasonably attack the video for it’s exploitation of girls, but you’re attempt to find reasons to denounce feminism or to say how “ladies” should act is on feeble footing. You are the one who is demanding debunking. Your words have been callous and nonconstructive. You should be seen as a “red flag” to women on the dating scene. They should understand you take them less seriously than your own hype. You sound afraid of women. Not supportive.

        • So in your world it’s acceptable for a woman to hit a man, but not for a man to strike back to defend himself? And that’s what it is you know. Self defense. That is the exact picture that I painted of it. It seems to me that your notion is women must be valued in all circumstances as women regardless of their transgressions. In a perfect world. Here in the real world, we have women serial killers, women who cut their husbands penises off, women who attack each other physically to further their own careers, and yet even the IDEA of a man being justified in striking a woman is impossible to you? Hell somewhere in this country right now there’s a woman smacking a guy daring him to hit her back under the guise that he won’t do it because it’s wrong to hit a woman.

          And I think that’s what really offends you in all of this. You’re right. I do not “honor women”. I don’t “honor men” either. I don’t honor any blanket group regardless of who is among them. I honor PEOPLE. Specific people. People who do good in their community. While I’ve suggested a man hitting a woman in self-defense is not a crime, and may even be just, did I ever suggest it was OK to harm an innocent women? Did I paint a picture of a hardened thug going after Mother Theresa? By no stretch of the imagination.

          It is not me who has minimized rape. It’s culture that has. I consider it to be one of the greater crimes that can be committed in this society. So how have I minimized it? I’ve stated that the crime is horrible enough as it is and that lying about the statistics does more harm then good, in effect helping to minimize the crime. This is fact. I’ve also stated that man on man, or woman on man rape, is almost as common as man on woman rape these days yet it gets zero attention. And I’m the one minimizing the cause? No. The people minimizing the cause are the people who are willing to look the other way when rape happens. For any reason, especially if it’s because the victim “should have been able to defend themselves” i.e. is male. What minimizes rape is the thousands of rape charges that are filed every year by people, men and women alike, who were not raped. What minimizes rape is notion like yours to be perfectly honest. Notions that a person willing to step up and say “this is wrong for everyone, not just for you” is “minimizing rape” is what’s minimizing rape.

          So yes. I SHOULD have a red flag when a girl goes out with me. That red flag should quite specifically read “I will NOT put up with bullshit”. Hell that goes for everyone, not just people I’m dating. The fact that you find it offensive that I’m NOT willing to put up with women’s bullshit just further addresses my points. I did not suggest that ALL women are card carrying man-hating feminists. Never even said I haven’t been on pleasant dates, that I don’t value or even love women, I never even SUGGESTED a belief that these notions reflect on “most women”.

          As for your notion about my facts being wrong… I absolutely loved that study you cited that proves that women make 23 percent less then men do, which you suggested I’m inaccurate by refusing to support. No? No study, no facts, just hatred spewed against someone you believe “hates women” for pointing out that “gender equality” means EQUAL ON ALL LEVELS? Gotcha.

          • No. Not “gotcha” Lawrence. You are not talking about equality as you don’t understand the inequities in the first place. I am not going to defend the words you put in my mouth because I’m not talking about allowing women to be abusive. You’ve gone off course with your “personal” and lost all objectivity. The highlight of most of your scattered comments have to do with what you would do on a “date” for example. No one should have to listen to your dating problems on a site about little girls being exploited. Little girls are not all about growing up to go on dates. Your comments are hostile towards women in particular and veer from topic in order to transmit your ideas of judgement stemming from the distress or rejection you have felt as a male in the changing/dating world. And pointing the light on your problems too directly risks your backlash and tirade as a hostile male, I realize as you have obvious buttons to push without trying. Men who feel confident about themselves do not fight feminists. They are feminists. As for men raping men… well that’s a male rape problem. Homophobia for example is a part of “rape culture”. I advocate against rape and abuse, Lawrence… I’m not elevating females above you just because I’m loud about what is REALLY wrong. And in terms of believing in self defense for women…I have been talking to rape survivors who don’t want to live in a world where they are expected to not be safe, and required to learn self defense just because men can’t control themselves. So I don’t force women in to situations they don’t feel confident in or say counter-aggression is the way. It is only one way of many. As for condoning an eye for an eye type behavior if a woman hits a man… well… that’s not going to do anything but make us all blind Lawrence. You’ve heard that cliche haven’t you? Anyhow, I’m for breaking the chain, not staying caught up in it. So have a good one, brother. Be a little easy on yourself maybe so you don’t go so heavy on others? And don’t worry about my “advice”… I’m not here to embark on fisticuffs… I have nothing to “prove” to you. I’m safe where I stand and armed with real facts no matter how many times you need to go round and round…

            • Actually, you ARE allowing women to be abusive. The moment you mentioned a man is always wrong in striking a woman, even in self defense, you are allowing women to be abusive. You have taken my comments entirely out of context and are attempting to debate based on your context without even looking at the tangibles. I never stated there’s anything wrong with a woman being strong, functional, and liberated. I cited an example of pure hostility, and one I have seen more than once. Now did I ever ONCE paint that as a picture of EVERY woman? Did I ever even SUGGEST that this is an accurate portrayal of MOST women? By no means. Yet you, for some reason, have decided to take it as such anyway. So let’s put the shoe on the other foot. Let’s say YOU were on a date with a man who acted hostile towards you for doing something you thought was completely innocent. Like let’s say you took care of the check and the man you’re dating said “I can take care of the check. I don’t need YOU to do that.” Would you continue the date? Yet, if faced with a woman who is openly and adamantly hostile towards me, I choose not to spend my time with her I am somehow wrong? I’m afraid not. I’m not going to spend the time and effort to get to know a girl’s “rules” before I can date her when those rules are as unreasonable as “you can’t open a door for me. That’s sexist”. It’s not sexiest. It’s a door. I do not fight feminists. I applaud their cause in general. There’s a difference though between feminists, and feminine superiority. What you suggest, the notion that I am against feminism, is like saying I’m racist because I believe black people who kill others should be in prison. I feel the same about white people, Asians, Latinos, Pygmies, conjoined twins, or any one else who decides to take a person’s life. Along that same notion, if I held the door open for a man out of politeness and he said “I’m not a girl. Don’t ever do that again”. I would say to him “no, you’re not a girl. You’re an asshole who can’t simply say ‘thank you’ and walk through the damn door”. There is a difference between hostility, and responding to hostility. A connect you seem to have completely overlooked. Furthermore, I could just as easily suggest that women who are comfortable with themselves are not “feminists” any more then men are. Men and women who are comfortable with themselves are functional members of society. They’ve gotten past “-ists” and “-isms” to lead what they consider to be a functional and productive life.

              Homophobia is a part of rape culture? Really? I’d like to see ANY study that verifies this. Moreover I never said a woman, even a feminist, is putting themselves above another. What I have suggested, and I’ll outright state it now, is that SOME feminists are putting their interests above their perception of society. As was the case in this video. Remember? The one that spawned these responses in the first place? This video does nothing to promote feminism. It’s all about HOSTILITY. Something you’ve completely overlooked when you’ve presumed to discuss my views towards feminism. Yet I never discussed feminism as a blanket definition for a person. That does not coincide with my beliefs, that every person is a unique individual with their own strengths and weaknesses. The only one who has discussed feminists as all being under one blanket, quite frankly, is you. So by your own logic, that means you’re insecure about something. What is it that makes you so insecure that when a person discusses unpleasant experiences with specific feminists, you presume they mean ALL feminists (including you).

              As a rape advocate, I hope you do not bring these notions to work. Even in your own words, you put the blame for rape on masculinity. Do you actually believe “rape survivors” are the only people who need to learn self-defense to believe they can live in this world safely? Or that rape is about “men who can’t control themselves”? That goes against just about every psychological study on the matter ever written. Even rape advocates rage against the notion that rape is about sex, and self-control. Like this one. http://laurelhouse.org.au/?page_id=26

              Also, when did I say hitting women is about an “eye for an eye”? I’ll try stating this again and perhaps you will understand it this time. I have my doubts though. If a girl hits a guy and he hits her back, I won’t feel sorry for her. If he continues to beat her, then he’s wrong and I will attempt to do something about it (like pull him off of her), but if he stops there, then I will leave them to their own problems. Someone who doesn’t want to get hit should not be hitting someone else in the first place. REGARDLESS OF GENDER. Equality. Woah. I’ve had women assault me physically. I haven’t punched a woman, and I’d like to think that I wouldn’t under any circumstances, but I have pushed a woman to defend myself, and would do so again under the same circumstances. Come to think of it, I haven’t hit a male since elementary school. I am against violence in general, and I don’t believe hitting someone is ever the right answer. However, I do believe in one’s right to defend themselves, and that does not change when gender lines are put into play. Someone swings at me, they are starting a fight with me. I will likely consider who it is attacking me, their relative strength (with has nothing to do with gender) and gauge my response accordingly, as I do not wish to cause any damage to a person even if they are the person who started the fight. But I’m not going to let myself get beat up over it either. If someone assaults me physically, I will defend myself physically. Regardless of who the attacker is. You seem to be the only person that takes that as “Wow this guy likes to hit women”. No, he doesn’t. He doesn’t even want to fight in the first place, and was forced into a situation where he either defends himself, or goes to the hospital. I have never in my life started a fight. Not even in grade school. I have finished more than 1, but I take no pride in that. I defended myself. I wish to this date I never had to, but I did. End of story.

              • Lawrence I haven’t read all of your words… but I get the gist of your feelings and I can tell you feel very upset by some personal experiences which you find obstruct you as a person. I don’t mean to use terms like “all” men and I’m not sure I did that, but if I did, that was a casualness of language that is certainly fair for you to point out. I know not all men are alike. I am married to a good one.
                I can tell from your tone and words that you are hostile and abusive to women emotionally. So I, not unlike you, would avoid dating anyone who made me feel abused. I still think your dating issues are misplaced in this discussion and off point and that I’m not the one directing anybody off topic. I still believe you are using this forum to exploit women and girls in your own anger towards them or me as you holler about when it’s right to hit women. And I know I’m not abusing you in anyway by pointing out how you are using violent language and advocating hitting women when you think “the fight is fair”. Women can join the military so I’m fully aware that they can fight… and that doesn’t mean that her male comrades/fellow soldiers should rape her. They should fight along side her. Military rapes are on the increase. So… in terms of what is a fair fight or not isn’t my point at all. Self defense should not be in our conversation. Domestic violence and rape cycles need to be broken not perpetuated. People defend themselves with guns, martial arts, words, etc. and laws protect them in some instances… so what?
                You do not have it “less fair” and your dating life does not matter a HOOT.
                I’m not going to pat you on the back for never starting a fight when your very words on this page explaining your dating techniques and criteria are emotionally disturbing “fighting” words. Of course you have the right to date anyone willing to date you. But women don’t owe you your expected responses. And all women are different too… we don’t need doors held open unless our arms are full… and the ones who like it on a date will tell you so and that’s great. Big deal. Anyhow… I think we are done talking. Best of luck on your path.

              • Lawrence, one more note…I also know rape is not about sex and that it is about violence. That’s a good point to bring up and we are not at odds on that at all.

              • Lawrence… don’t mean to break these comments up… thought I didn’t really need to… but Yes, homophopia is full of violence and the language used to degrade and the rapes perpetuated on boys and men is indicative of rape culture not unlike rapes of women or raping anyone into an inferior position. I don’t need links and statistics from you. I read all types of men women and feminists… I don’t lump people into “all” and these terms are used as a point of reference when people work on issues together but I’m not a feminist before I am a human or anything. Our limitations with words are part of the problem that create the walls and divides and battles. Feminists need to exist whether or not you understand the need for the ism. I don’t like isms much either so we agree on the defects that push to people to extremes… but due to what women have experienced we have a need for leadership in this regard. All times… I’m into all manners of feminists. I like Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. and I don’t want black men in jail for twice as long for the same crimes. I don’t want them arrested twice as much as whites for the same crimes. Black brothers are not fairly treated and the sources of poverty in many communities suggests you have a limited view on what is fair for people of color. I don’t over look crime, but the prison system is a problem. Money could be better spent… prevention… and that means I care greatly for boys and men and don’t want them suffering from male abuse in institutions or in families or made to go to war over greed… So Help break your own cycles… You have plenty to do without picking on girls.

            • i havent bothered reading all of lawrences comment (or multiple comments), but i find it disturbing how after skimming through your replies (admittedly i couldve missed it) you complete sidestep the self defense issue in favor of personal attacks(i dont know you or lawrence, i didnt even read lawrences comments past the first sentence of his reply)

              ill repeat

              you said

              >Chivalry in one sentence regarding your willingness to be polite and open doors juxtaposed against it’s okay to hit a woman if she hits you first

              he said

              >So in your world it’s acceptable for a woman to hit a man, but not for a man to strike back to defend himself?

              the whole idea that a man is not allowed to hit a woman back (i stress; in self defense) is ridiculous and sexist

              first; the sexism; it assumes women are either too mentally weak to handle the repurcussions of their actions (as a child) or that women are too physically weak to handle a punch (in which case why are you initiating a violent confrontation?)

              second; the ridiculousness; imagine if the roles were reversed and a man hits a woman, you wouldnt say the woman absolutely can not him him back would you? if we take this violence (and gender reversal) to an extreme you could easily liken it to saying that a woman is not allowed to fight back against a rapist (and i seriously hope you realise how absurd that is?)

              and on a semi related note; some (very very few) women use this antiquated ‘shield’ to justify their violent behavior against men

              ideally no one would hit anyone, but people are horrible

              the saying should be a gender neutral ‘never hit anyone unless in self defence’

              • Right Linguistically Inept, you don’t know ME or that Lawrence fellow.

                And Lawrence is interested in his dating problems more than what you are trying to linguistically provide information for. He wants to find acceptable reasons and times to hit women or talk about hitting them on a site about young girls…being used in media. And he has his “mommy issues” about why mom’s are to blame for why women get what they get. That’s what he and I were sort of “discussing”…

                Now as for what you are trying to bait me into. You can F**k off. Or go F**k yourself. Your choice. But whatever you are doing is a “mind F**k” and I’m not going to allow your obvious mindf**kerness to touch effect me.

                I don’t advocate violence against anybody or give abusive people free passes based on any gender. So back the F**K off of me.

                Additionally, I’m not going to discuss self defense or domestic violence or child abuse with a person who calls themselves linguistically inept and who has no identity to “defend”. You made many points but none of them hit quite right out of context and I don’t feeeeeeel like sorting them out for you.

                People are not “horrible”. Sometimes people are doing “horrible” things to one another and the F-Bomb video is indicative of a rape culture that has trickled down to our youngest… as we witness capitalist predators market feminism.

                You might be right about concepts of self defense in what you were saying in your comments to me, but you got me ALL WRONG. And I don’t like your leading questions or insinuations.

                On a personal note, I like the F-word. And I don’t believe in being a “lady” in order to please the patriarchal-dominated world. Lawrence misses the days when “ladies” puffed up men’s egos.

                Enuff said… “Oh self proclaimed inept one.”

            • >Right Linguistically Inept, you don’t know ME or that Lawrence fellow.

              i dont know you personally, i think it would be silly to try drawing conclusions about someones personality from a reply; i do know your replies and i know that youre sidestepping replying an issue

              >And Lawrence is interested in his dating problems more than what you are trying to linguistically provide information for. He wants to find acceptable reasons and times to hit women or talk about hitting them on a site about young girls…being used in media. And he has his “mommy issues” about why mom’s are to blame for why women get what they get. That’s what he and I were sort of “discussing”…

              i dont care, this is more sidestepping; if lawrence has mommy issues or whatever i dont care (i havent read his replies, and again; i dont know him… i do dislike when people result to insults in an debate though), im bothered by the first point (which i stress; you brought up) which is a seperate issue

              >Now as for what you are trying to bait me into. You can F**k off. Or go F**k yourself. Your choice. But whatever you are doing is a “mind F**k” and I’m not going to allow your obvious mindf**kerness to touch effect me.

              i dont even know how to reply to this? you engage in public discussion and are upset when other people chime in?

              >I don’t advocate violence against anybody or give abusive people free passes based on any gender. So back the F**K off of me.

              i didnt say you intentionally were, im saying their are women who use the misguided (and often well meaning) ‘never hit women’ as a way to justify their violence against men, self defence to a reasonable degree is justifiable no matter the gender of the victim

              >Additionally, I’m not going to discuss self defense or domestic violence or child abuse with a person who calls themselves linguistically inept and who has no identity to “defend”. You made many points but none of them hit quite right out of context and I don’t feeeeeeel like sorting them out for you.

              sorry, would you prefer if i replied under the name of john sommers, amy smith or sam midworth (all random fake names)? my name should mean nothing to the points i am making, and is another attempt to sidestep an important issue

              if you want to know why i associate with the name ‘linguistically inept’ though; its for a multiple of reasons (to be clear; i have ASD):

              – i dont converse with people often, i find it very uncomfortable

              – when i do converse with people my sentences dont string together very well (something that seeps into my typing or writing, but its much easier to shuffle around, try to remove pointless tangents and generally make easier for others to read… i confess i dont do an amazing job; but its normally readable)

              – i only know one language (something i ideally would like to change, but due to aforementioned points it wouldnt practically be useful)

              which is why i much prefer written communication, no tricky inflections, tones or body language to factor and its much easier for me speak

              >People are not “horrible”.

              agree to disagree, i cant provide any solid evidence but i strongly believe everyone is capable of doing horrible things when put under specific circumstances (self preservation, preservation of a loved one, misunderstanding and misinformation – are those two the same? maybe im not using the right words to describe the circumstance i mean – being what the most common ‘pressure points’)

              to be clear; i dont consider self defence to be a ‘horrible’ thing (because; faced with violence and lacking an escape its either self defense or submit), but i would consider excessive self defence a ‘horrible’ thing (because we’re already on the subject); for example if a woman slaps a man and the man pummels her half to death (and ofcourse self defence should be carefully calculated so as not to escalate the confrontation… if the man in previous example instead slapped her back it *could* lead to a confrontation escalation… i feel like the appropriate response would be either walking away or opening a discussion to find out the root of the violence/greivance against the attacked… but the second one is a path full of landmines)

              >but you got me ALL WRONG. And I don’t like your leading questions or insinuations.

              i didnt say anything about you, i was talking about the disturbing lack of a reply to a point you originally brought up

              >On a personal note, I like the F-word. And I don’t believe in being a “lady” in order to please the patriarchal-dominated world.

              unrelated tangent… but personally im not fond of excessive profanity (although rare use can really help illustrate a point or feeling), but i dont really care about how others verbalise themselves as long as its not excessively loud (shouting) or targetted at me but i dont see why you self censor

              • I don’t choose to talk to you inept person. I choose to speak to you how I choose to speak using words I want to use. I engaged in public debate as far as I wanted and I allowed some discourse as did others engaging with me and we all stopped where we stopped based on our personal boundaries. I don’t want to know you based on your dumb fake name. Capeche? So take a hike. You can go tell some other woman/women how she/they should act as gender neutral and tell them what words to use so they can to get somewhere with you in your life. I’m not interested in you. I don’t care if you feel insulted or shouted out at all. I don’t need to include you or exclude you. NOTHING is being side stepped. I’m teaching you how to back off. The reason why I am not being civil to you in the way you’d prefer can be interpreted how ever you need to feel good about yourself. This forum is immature as it exists and I don’t feel like suffering the fools any more. Go find your “right” teacher who coddles your ego and or your “right” student to learn from your wisdom. Ok? I don’t begrudge you your life. So stay out of my way.

              • Linguistically inept… I’ll try to be more fair to you… check out Jeanne de Montbaston on her wordpress.com site. You might have to search her name for the link to her blog as I’m not sure exactly what it is. She has an article a while back about victim blaming and rape where she and I discussed self defense in her comment section about rape and survivors, and laws being created/changed discussed due to rape on college campuses as well as things like nail polish that detects date rape drugs being detected in drinks… But she primarily writes about art history and women in art history and the lack of representation or the depictions including marriage as an institution in history…and she’s working on her PhD as well as she’s teaching… but I find her very civil and very well written and more patient than I am. I offer you her name as an insight into my learning and maybe our paths will cross again on better terms. I am very accustomed to getting kicked around lately by boys men and bully women so I am feeling cagy. Please don’t carry that. Nobody needs that baggage. Peace.

            • >I don’t choose to talk to you inept person.

              and then you continue to talk? im not surprised you misunderstood my point when you’re flip flopping all over your own words

              • if you got my last recommendation to Jeanne, then you can certainly accept my offer of peace. if you want to fight, based on your need for attention then go ahead and say I don’t understand and am flip flopping. I am not reading your words carefully. I wasn’t quite giving you the time of day. So yes, it’s not my best work. But I don’t want to work for you so any how check out the site I mentioned about Jeanne and learn or do not. I care not about your life choices at this point.

  9. I’m curious to see if you also find their video in racism to be exploitative. http://youtu.be/KQfg52m0-4o

    I think it’s fair that they use aggressive marketing strategies like the companies that continually oppress women and minorities. Although the are raising funds, they don’t seem like a corporation that intends to perpetuate oppressive messages in the media. There is value to learning how navigate all this data that’s out there. We’re not gonna get it right every time but I hope that we learn something every time.

    Sure, such curse words were shocking coming out of these young girls mouths. But I can’t say I didn’t relate with their fire and passion. I was angry about sexism when I was 13, too. I think it’s effective (esp. the racism video) in bringing to light how we contradict and gloss over some of these issues like unhealthy body images and color blindedness.

    I can’t say they went about this the best way, but I also don’t think it should be reduced to being exploitative when it had several effects. One such effect being starting this exact conversation.

    • I don’t know about Rebecca, but I’ll sure chime in on this one. Yes, this is exploitative, and wrong regardless of how effective this is. They are using a series of tragedies in association with children to perpetuate a racist message. They have completely thrown out the facts of the case, or the notion that it can be handled by the proper authorities, in favor of blanket claims. It perpetuates the notion that Mike Brown is innocent and that Darren Wilson is guilty even though the facts of the case are still for the most part withheld to allow a fair and just trial to occur. It even defends the notion that it was OK for the citizens of Ferguson to commit violent and destructive acts against their fellow man, including innocent people whose only involvement in this case is owning a business in that particular city, in order to “effect change”.

      This video suggests that only white people are racist. That is the most misguided notion I’ve ever seen. It also perpetuates misinformation the same as the video about feminism. It even goes so far as to suggest that there isn’t racism committed against other races. Where are the Muslims in this video? Or the Asians? Latinos? Native Americans? Or the white people discussing not racist acts against blacks, but racist acts against themselves? Hell where’s the studies that back up the “facts” presented in this video? A person with an ethnic sounding name is less likely to get a job then a person with a white sounding name with the same resume? That’s a boldfaced lie. Hell, tell that to Barack Obama. Or Oprah Winfrey. Or…

      Well I could go on all day with that one, but let’s also take a look at who is applying for these jobs. Are the resumes identical? I doubt it. There are more white people then blacks in America who are graduating college with productive degrees. Degrees that are centered around education first, not sports first. UCLA recently came under fire for that. Just a few years ago a group of african-americans protested right in front of UCLA claiming they were racist based on the notion that only 10 percent of their student populace is black. Yet when the facts came forward it was determined that less then 5 percent of UCLA’s applicants (not QUALIFIED applicants mind you, but people that applied whether they’re qualified or not) were black. That means it’s actually EASIER for a black person to get into UCLA, not more difficult as they suggest, and the reason there isn’t more blacks is because black people simply are not applying to go there. Before one looks at a company to determine if the people they employ are racially balanced, one needs to look at the applicants and see who is actually applying for the jobs, and among those, who is qualified for the job. Videos like this teach people, children and adults alike, to overlook notions like that. They validate the notion that the reason you weren’t hired is “because of your skin color”, and that the response to that is to complain, to play the race card, even to sue when it’s very likely that with a little effort they could improve their resume and get the next job very easily.

      • The Ferguson case seems pretty clear-cut, to me, but even if Brown’s killer can be exonerated — based on all available evidence, not just the whim of a court — the fact remains that police commit murder every day. The victims, just as with NY’s stop-and-frisk, are disproportionately black, and the aggressors, the police, almost never face consequences for their actions.

        As for names and job applications, this has been studied. Was the study flawed? Perhaps — I don’t have time to investigate it in extreme detail. I’m nevertheless far more inclined to trust this study than your indignant “doubt” coupled with your irrelevant invocation of two powerful black individuals.


        • I should add that the same study also investigated the effect of resume improvement on application outcomes; it found that for white-sounding names, resume improvement resulted in 30% more callbacks, while for black-sounding names, the effect was only 9%. So much for “with a little effort they could improve their resume and get the next job very easily.”

          • Oh, that study was so well designed. Really compelling evidence of systematic inequalities that are beyond the control of individuals, no matter how hard they pull upon their bootstraps.

        • How is it so clear to you? Because minorities have a history of being mistreated? The evidence isn’t in yet and people are already presuming intent. Autopsies are still being done, and yet people are already judging this. Without the evidence to boot. Even Mike Brown’s “Best friend” has recanted his statement and changed his story more then once painting his friend as less and less innocent. And now as autopsy data is released they’re finding it consistent with the story Darren Wilson told. If you honestly believe Mike Brown was an innocent victim, I feel you haven’t looked at much of the information, even just what’s been released to the public. If you have looked at that information and you still believe Wilson to be guilty, I feel that indeed there is a “racial bias”, and it’s stemming mostly from you. That no matter what the outcome, and what evidence supports the outcome, you won’t be content until Wilson pays. I am glad you won’t be on that jury that’s for sure.

          As for the study, 4 people is hardly an accurate assessment. Both the “white” sounding names came before the “black” sounding ones. Perhaps them being called first was purely alphabetical. Also it states “similar credentials”. Similar, not identical. What were the differences in their credentials? That was not addressed in the slightest. Were the resumes sent at the exact same time? If Mr. White’s was sent first, his is more likely to get pulled first. Was there any follow-up from the applicant? Sometimes the hiring process gets interrupted before you can get through the resumes by a go-getter that walks into the office with an extra copy of his resume just in case the supplicant didn’t get his email. What jobs did they apply for in the first place? And where? All of these minor little details can effect the entire process. But more then anything, it’s the small sample size that gets me. Try 400 people, not 4. Then MAYBE you’ll have a point. Maybe.

          So I ask you… you say cops murder a person every day. It’s almost midnight. What black man did the cops “murder” today?

  10. I think the idea of curse words as something to be seen as reprehensible and objectively immoral (in the way it’s been framed in this article) is a prime example of the frivolities those with ruling-class privilege (whether economic or racial) often find themselves concerned with. I think this article succeeds not in hitting the nail on the head, but banging it’s own thumb in the process, and here’s why:
    The advertisement is solely dependent on shock value: granted.
    Given that I agree there, what is shocking here is the ‘use of curse words’ in a sort of ‘exploitative way’ through children, as the article has stated. I would argue that vain attempts to shield all children from curse words which are not even objectionable by any rational, non-kneejerk reactionary view shaped WHOLLY by some sort of social mores arbitrated by the white, male, dominant Christian values espousing hegemony are frivolities that primarily the white, privileged upper class bother concerning themselves and their children with. Children play violent video games, listen to music advocating violent behavior, and what strikes home for feminists these days is one of the most neutral curse-words in the dictionary? If they were saying ‘Bitch’, ‘Cunt’, ‘Whore’, etc. In objectionable ways relevant to feminism, I’d understand. But fuck? Sweet Christ do we have work to do in the feminist blogosphere.

  11. Some thoughts: 1. I don’t think there is anything wrong with little girls cussing at all. 2. I don’t think these little girls are being exploited any more than any other little girls in commercials. 3. I don’t agree that this ad isn’t raising awareness. Sure it’s a capitalist project, but it might I think it’s probably also raising awareness. Not like my favorite thing is awareness through capitalism, but you know… 4. Similarly, the shirts are kind of awesome and I wonder what kind of shirt the woman who wrote this article is wearing and whether or not it was produced under ethical circumstances in a not-for-profit situation. Um, probably not. 5. So I guess moral of the story for me is: If you want to talk about how capitalism is fucked up and little girls are exploited, yes, totally do that, but do you really want your example to be the like 1 feminist ad?

    • What makes you so sure the tee shirts this website is peddling are made under “ethical circumstances”. Furthermore, they are NOT “Not-for-profit” by any stretch of the imagination. That they donate some of the proceeds to charity doesn’t change that. They are profiting off of these shirts. So yes, I really want the example for this to be the 1 feminist ad. For a multitude of reasons. For the misinformation it presents, for putting blasphemous words into the mouths of children (and I don’t mean cuss words, I mean the “stats” they have the children regurgitating), for perpetuating the stereotype of the militant angry aggressive feminist whose place is not to better her own life, or even life for women in general, but to hold men accountable for why their lives suck. This isn’t the only feminist advertisement out there. A lot of them are misguided, along the notion of “We must fight to better society” by activism, by profanity, by rallies and accusations instead of by voting, by working hard, by proving your own personal worth to society. Instead it perpetuates stereotypes as though the glass ceiling is still there, it’s never been broken, and it never will be. Ask Hilary Clinton about that glass ceiling.

    • The shirts *are* kind of awesome, but the Feminist Majority Foundation has been producing “This is what a feminist looks like” shirts since at least the 1990s. How nice of FCKH8 to appropriate that slogan for themselves!

      Re: your other comments: You may be interested in reading more of my thoughts on capitalism exploits little girls, since this is certainly not a one-off for me. My blog is at https://rebeccahains.com/blog/, and you can check out my books here: https://rebeccahains.com/books-by-rebecca-hains/

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting. Have a great evening.

    • So 1) girls, and boys I assume, should be able to say whatever they want and 2) can be exploited in commercials if we assume all commercials with children are exploitative and 3) using children for capitalism is good as long as it might “probably” be raising awareness to something good. Of course 4) the shirts are “kind of” awesome and 5) the moral of the story is don’t use “like 1 feminist ad” which may or may not be but “probably” will help feminism. Holy crap, you make about as much sense as a submarine with windows.

      • And it put my reply in the wrong place….it goes up there underneath Cathy Borck.

        • Sorry, Rebecca beat me to it. Nice response Rebecca and very well written article about this video. It even calmed my mom down a bit as she felt certain the end of the world was drawing near.

          • Yikes. Remind me not to share my thoughts with *this* crowd anymore.

  12. it´s been removed (or so it seems, as far I can see – “not found” – )

  13. They are a for-profit company raising awareness about issues of equality. From their website: FCKH8.com has given over $250,000 to the equality cause through directly funded projects and donations to LGBT charities. In 2014 FCKH8.com expanded it’s anti-hate message with campaigns and tees focused on fighting sexism and racism and supporting those important causes.

    Let’s give them a chance to raise money and give back to women’s causes before labeling them “exploitive”.

    • They are NOT a non-profit company.They even state very clearly on their website that they are a for-profit company. That’s one of their problems. Their ads suggest (without stating) that they are a charitable organization not a corporation, which is completely wrong. Also, it’s not perpetuating an anti-hate message. Quite the opposite. It’s presenting a “hate the haters” message, and even a “blame the haters” message. The proper message isn’t to respond to hate with hatred. It’s to rise above the hatred and determine your own level of success.

      • Forgot one note too. How much of these “Charitable donations” are they writing off on their tax forms? A charitable donation doesn’t mean squat if the money is coming out of someone elses pocket. Sometimes it still doesn’t mean squat even if it does come out of your own pocket as well. For example, Sam Walton contributed literally millions of dollars to various charities, most notably Christian churches, over his lifetime. So does that make Wal*Mart’s current practices acceptable?

        • Hold it for one second.. a charitable donation is just that.. a donation made to the charity of your choosing..It is still ok to do that in America. It’s not designed to be a political statement but it does demonstrate your political and religious beliefs, be they leaning way to the left or otherwise. It’s generosity towards a cause you believe in and the financial right to back it up. Walmart , JC Penny, the Newman Foundation , McDonald’s, even those on Duck Dynasty have contributed Billions to medical research, women’s issues, the care of children and the like. Had it not been for their generosity we would all be much worse off. Like it or not in our society every dollar in your wallet IS someone else’s money ..and for many it came from big government handouts, carried on the backs of those who are honest, hard working Americans. Walmart provides more jobs and better insurance in this country than most any other employer of the average American who really wants to work rather than live like a parasite off of the Obama welfare economy. All its practices might not be perfect but Walmart is not the enemy here.

          • Not as such. A charitable donation CAN be exactly that. A donation given to the charity of your choosing. But it can also be any number of things. But most notably a charitable donation is a tax write-off. That’s where a multitude of questions come into play. I’ll try to use Microsoft as the example here. Microsoft actually donates quite a bit of money to charity. They do so quietly, however, as most of the money they donate is to allow for offsets to taxable assets. In other words, they’re giving the money to charity instead of giving it up in taxes. Bill Gates does the same, but he’s very vocal about his charitable donations, and as a result the press and the media are vocal about it too. The reason being… he offers far more then the sum of his “tax offsets” to charities.

            You don’t know what kind of country this would be if not for “Charitable donations”. Susan G Kohmen has made a career off of accepting donations, all to raise “Awareness” for something that people are already aware of. In the mean time, her foundation isn’t finding a cure (isn’t even really trying to), and has lead to a culture of ignoring every other form of cancer including testicular, lung, and throat cancer, which are much more fatal at this particular point in time. Now if that money had gotten filtered elsewhere who knows where we’d be? What if that money went to an actual CURE instead of to “education”. It’s plausable that a cure for breast cancer could cure other forms of cancer as well. Could that money not be better spent?

            Or what if charitable donations went to the state. What if there were no tax offsets, so the money people give to charities literally has to come out of their own pocket, not out of their tax money. First and foremost, this country would not be in debt anymore. What wondrous advancements could our country have if people actually paid their taxes instead of giving the money to NPO’s. Perhaps the government would have cured cancer on their own. Perhaps they would be able to look past the debate over whether or not stem cell research is right, and move right on to finding something better then stem cells to use for medical research. Perhaps they could build shelters for the homeless, feed hungry children, provide homes for orphans, jails that aren’t so overcrowded that we have to consider releasing non-violent criminals to make room for the violent ones… all these wonderful things that make society work. In 1960 the US wasn’t in debt to the tune of trillions of dollars. Americans weren’t giving their tax dollars to NPOs instead of to the tax bureau either.

            As for Wal*Mart… in what world do they give insurance to anything more then the top 1 percent of their employees? I defend wal*mart left and right, as working for them is hardly skilled labor. It’s funny too that you should mention Obama, yet it’s Wal*Mart who is encouraging their employees to “live like parasites”. Wal*Mart encourages their employees to go on welfare to offset the embarrassing pay they receive. They force some employees to get on state funded medical benefits just so they don’t have to pay out insurance claims. Even the notion they provide more jobs is dubious at best. “More jobs” on what level? More people employed? If these people can’t even make half of what’s considered to be a “living wage” then that’s no benefit to society.

    • It’s possible to raise awareness of important causes in an exploitative way. It’s also possible to do so in a way that doesn’t exploit others. This is becoming a pattern with FCKH8 — their posts on anti-racism surrounding Ferguson were appalling. I think that if we’re voting with our dollars, we can buy tee-shirts from organizations that are being ethical and responsible in their work. For example, the Feminist Majority Foundation has been selling “This is what a feminist looks like” t-shirts since the mid-1990s, and we KNOW that money spent there is going to a good cause. We don’t need a t-shirt company launched by a strategic branding firm to “give back” (aka “get a tax write off”) to orgs on our behalf; we can go straight to more ethical, credible orgs with a track record we can trust.

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  15. I said fuck when I was their age, so I couldn’t figure out why this video skeeved me out to where I couldn’t get through it.

    Not only did you nail it on this video, but you also helped me figure out why I got so pissed off about the Beastie Boys song getting re appropriated for that toy commercial that went viral last year. If it had been a real parody, no harm no foul. But it was an ad for a toy that seemed to be basically pink tinker toys. Ugh.

    • Chris, good point–this is very reminiscent of the Goldieblox debaucle. That kind of appropriation is just not cool.

  16. umm, I think you all have missed the plot…. perhaps you do not watch TV… but companies that have had access to PRINT< TV< Radio – have been using children to sell to children since I was born (1980)… I though the video was funny, and if you have a sense of humor, maybe you would too…

  17. This is very offensive! You as a mother or parent do not have your young children say filthy words, and think its cute, because its not! There are ways to stand behind women’s rights with out the dirty language, many have done it! Teach your children about God instead of teaching them its ok to say these words. Beauty is skin deep, and from the looks of it with those filthy mouths, they do not make them little girls beautiful, maybe on the outside, but not on the Inside! You parents should be ashamed, but one day you will have to answer to God, and I would love to hear your explanation for this one! The government needs to leave these pastors alone for teaching Gods Word and they need to arrest you parents for exploiting your young daughters like that and thinking it will help the cause, all it does is make you look like bad parents! I suggest you pray and realize this is not right, with mouths like those your daughters will be the first ones to be raped, sorry to say that, but dirty talk is not the way a young lady should talk, and they could of only learned this talk from their parents, so no I don’t back this up, and I feel it should be taken off the internet, you are very wrong about this I. So many ways! May His have mercy on all you parents!

  18. I feel like I see all sides of this. Is it harsh, yes and could they have worked with some older girls who really understand what is going on, yes. However, that would not had the same level of impact and it was a choice that their parents made, hopefully! However is it that much different than Ms. Hains writing this long article about these girls (which brings more attention to them by the way) and her just to sneak in an add for her book at the end! Of course its different, by how much? Did you not take advantage of this situation to sale too? I would have liked it much better if you had left out the bit about your book!

    I am joking partly, to make the point! I think it can be argued that the line was crossed some here, but I don’t think its anything to get up in arms about. Their children, their call, certainly worse things good be going on! Who knows what these kids will glean from this experience, maybe it helped them have a better understanding of what this issue is about!

  19. All you have to do to understand FCKH8 is look at the models they choose to model their shirts.

  20. Compelling our young innocents to perform in a coarse and crude manner…Sounds like American Progressivism to me…

  21. I disagree. First, I have a nine year old, as you know, and SHE would have LOVED to be a part of this! SHE wants to screen it at our next meeting of “feminist kids and their grown ups too” -a group she started. SHE was empowered by hearing these girls! She felt they were girls who thought like her! So I think that without knowing them, you can’t say at all that they were exploited. As for the shirts, why not sell them and spread that message? Seems like a good one to me! Also, a percentage goes toward groups and organizations that eradicate sexism, right?

    • Gypsy, FCKH8 has not yet announced which groups they’re supporting with their proceeds–and they’ve appropriated these slogans from organizations like Feminist Majority Foundation, without attribution or permission, who have been selling shirts with these slogans since at least the mid-1990s. FCKH8 is also transphobic and did a really problematic campaign surrounding Ferguson. I wouldn’t advise throwing your support behind them without doing some additional research.

  22. Oh jeez. Just what we needed. Another for-profit company with a social justice mission. Give me a break. Fir some reason “for profit” is evil. The message is good for our country. If only MORE for profit company’s decided to take on social justice causes we would have a better world.

    • It’s evil when they appropriate t-shirt designs from actual nonprofits that sell those designs to directly fund their social justice initiatives, as FCKH8 has done.

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  24. “Where is their sense of corporate responsibility?” Let’s be honest, that isn’t a real term. As far as exploitation and barren lack of ethics goes, I say this is on the gentle side. And even if they are selling T-shirts for their own gain, they are selling the RIGHT shirts, shirts that will help spread awareness. It is good to actively and aggressively pursue a social justice with the mindset to be the front runner. What if they turn into a huge, evil corporation that ends rape? God forbid.

    Their “Generation Like” mind set is right on the money, pun intended. Getting the most “likes” IS the most important thing, monetary wise and awareness wise, and empowerment CAN be bottled up and sold, but not in the obvious way; just like a message in a bottle, awareness can be spread by the consumer in the form of gaudy T-shirts. Sure, someone bought a car with that money, but someone else saw that shirt and decided to do something.

    And let’s not ignore the fact that money raised can, yes, go back into the company for further awareness-raising, and yes, further money-raising.

    You say you would have no problem if the video was done completely not-for-profit. That’s insane! If it is a good video, then it is a good video no matter what. That’s like saying cookies aren’t good if you have to buy them at someone else’s gain, or that sex isn’t good if the other person enjoys it. What’s good is good! Your argument fell apart completely, without any outside influence necessary. Leave that part out next time.

    It doesn’t really matter if a good thing was done for a bad reason, all that matters is a good thing was done. As far as I’m concerned, THIS ARTICLE is exploitative, in that you are trying to attack a seemingly easy target in a way of demonstrating your insight and strutting to your readership. Instead of latching onto a clever little idea and knocking a good thing down a peg, it is better to support it; even if the crew behind the curtain might be to no good.

    • I agree with everything you wrote! What’s good is good, totally.

    • Kurt, the designs they’re selling were appropriated from actual nonprofits that created them and have sold them for years to directly fund their initiatives.

    • “They’re doing it for money” is the same charge that oil industry trolls use to demonize climate scientists. Of course it’s rubbish.

  25. Reblogged this on Dr. Jennifer W. Shewmaker and commented:
    Dr. Rebecca Hains argues that the FCKH8 “F-Bomb Princess” commercial exploits girls rather than giving them an authentic voice to argue for a change regarding sexism. What do you think of this video? Is it empowering? Offensive? Exploitative?

  26. I’d like to challenge FCKH8 to do another version of this ad with only one change: *adult women* dressed in princess costumes. THAT would get the point across in a far more incisive way, IMO. Hearing this message with the *little girls* dressed up as princesses prompted me to think to myself, are they saying we (women) are being childish about wanting equality? Are they saying that we are acting like “princesses” in the sense that we’re asking for things we haven’t really earned? I think the message about equality is good, but *FCKH8’s execution* of it failed.

  27. I definitely like what you’re saying here, the superficial shock value of these images are overwhelming the message. Shocking people is perhaps not the smartest way to get their attention. Likewise, I notice that a lot of “feminist” campaigns like these are pretty aggressively hostile towards men. Feminism isn’t about brow-beating and shaming men, its about achieving peace, equality, and mutual respect with men!

  28. Also, remember that diapered, African American Nebraska toddler who was the subject of a viral video that his family took (and foolishly posted) where he cussed up a storm? It wasn’t for a “cause” (or a for-profit enterprise), but that little boy was taken away from his mother by child services. It’s really weird how this is all meta-debate about whether or not it’s cute and empowering to watch little girls swear or whether it’s exploitative of them — but in the context of poor people not doing it for profit it’s the kind of shit that gets your kid taken away.

  29. Assuming that in fact their aim is equality, if the producers of this video redirected their energies towards initiatives aimed at teaching girls and young women how to curb their perfectly natural feminine risk aversion, and thereby become better negotiators in the workplace, they would more assuredly achieve that aim in shorter time.

    But something tells me ‘equality’ is beside their point.

  30. Pingback: Viral Right Now: Revisiting the Little Feminists | Lilith in Lilies

  31. And… you end your piece with shameless self-promotion… Oh, the irony…

    • Actually, my book is one component of my credentials in this area. It’s part of my standard author’s bio whenever I write for blogs, web sites, or newspapers. FWIW, the book is full of content that extends this conversation further (including mediated stereotypes, consumerism, and representations of gender and race), and it provides concrete, actionable advice to parents of little girls.

  32. Producing a viral video using shock tactics like this, while perhaps bringing light to weighty issues, does the disservice of cheapening the “righteous indignation.” It’s blatant commercialism. Exploitative, yes? But there are other, more lasting ways to bring those issues to light. Without using underage actors.

  33. I noticed the video on Upworthy but I didn’t click on it. The very first screen capture, the first one shown above, told me everything I needed to know to stay away. It’s pretty obvious, actually.

    What concerns me is how many people go ahead and click on something like that. Is everyone’s innate awareness dial turned all the way to the left?

  34. Reblogged this on E.T. Monster and commented:
    This was hilarious and amazing! It blew my mind. It keeps my interested and educated, I am one happy viking now! Go females!

  35. “A social media marketing perspective devoid of ethics.” Agreed 100%. That’s pretty much the world we live in, and I don’t like it at all.

  36. Reblogged this on Kelly Winberg and commented:
    Watched this in our American Marketing Association meeting, we didn’t think they were able to get their real message out past their humor.

  37. I have’t seen the video, but I can figure out how is it going to be. If it helps, you have my vote. People may say I have a prefixed notion about these views by giving you a vote without watching the video. But I have been in the media for quite long. I understand that there are a lot of companies/corporate who love to be controversial and even if the video is banned tomorrow, they have met their objective. It is just cheap publicity.

  38. Wow, what pure madness! what total garbage!…its this kind of garbage that’s eating the core of our society, why couldn’t they use strong biblical words, or strong religious words or some good old Shakespearean words for that matter, which preserves the morality of the soul…society is already dealing with the power of words and no amount of profanity will make people listen or change…its nasty and evil minds creating such ridiculous garbage which is only part of the process…♥jjf

  39. With all due respect to your arguments, the fact that the blog ends with a link to buy your book diminishes the power of your contention regarding profit motive.

  40. Pingback: I’m a fan FCKH8’s ‘F-Bomb Princess’ viral video | Reel Girl

  41. I’d love to take a moment and point out why I am on both sides in this situation. The reasons for making this video were absolutely disgusting. Fckh8 should be ashamed of themselves for using these children to sell their t-shirts for profit. However, the message was clear as day. I thought completely different before and after watching this video. It’s powerful and beautiful. And whether or not it was made for right or wrong reasons, it certainly speaks volumes about our country and what we think about women.

  42. Pingback: FCKH8’s “F-Bomb Princess” video isn’t offensive—it’s exploitative. | Life as a young parent

  43. I completely agree with your throughts on this video. Such a shame people seem to be using a good ’cause’/thought to fuel their own profits…

  44. I taught middle school for thirty years The children pick up the tune and will sing this until the fad is over. So it will be on the lips of the children. They will look at how people react to it. Dirty songs are not knew. Hidden messages have been around. Does it serve a purpose? Will it change anything? Probably not. But is it wrong? Look at any mag on cars. Usually some pretty girl with a skimpy outfit is promoting the mag. Unfortunately sex sells and I just do not see it changing.

  45. Reblogged this on crossingfrontieres and commented:
    Whether or not the T-shirt company gives to charities matters very little. Students who sell their bodies online pay for college. That’s a good cause too! What lessons are they learning except to use their bodies as a commodity to get smart. Continuing to make kids prawns a la jon benet serves adults, not kids. The money donated to charities is on the backs of little girls – a version of child labor which we condemn other countries for. We tell those counties that they’re undeveloped, under developed or developing when they use kids to make profits. we do same in princess costume. Do princess costumes obscure what the real story is? Do we think it is a fairy take if we out them in princess costumes and have them swear like “firemen” as the French or verb goes? isn’t that female empowerment just a tad undeveloped and under developed as a thought? If feminism wants to challenge sexist ways of society, can’t it employ adult women to do their advertising? must they recruit the young? Have we been reduced to using 6-13 yr old girls to raise awareness of sexism by further commodifying them? Next will be 1 mth to 5 yr olds.

  46. There is nothing exploitative about dressing up your children as princesses, filming them and then rattling the money tin.

    Anybody who thinks that is exploitative is a misogynist.

    Why are people always so quick to judge feminism by the actions of feminists and the results of feminist policies, rather than by the dictionary definition of feminism which clearly states that feminism is about “gender equality”? Don’t people use dictionaries anymore?

    As long as you say the words “gender equality” ver and over when addressing the UN (or whatever) then whatever you are advocating will be gender equality, even if to the untrained eye it might appear to be the very opposite of that. For example “he for she” looks like the opposite of gender equality, but it isn’t because Emma Watson said the phrase “gender equality” in her speech AND she referred to the “dictionary definition of feminism” and everything.

    If I started a “blacks for whites” campaign where I demanded black people started serving the needs and wants of white people that would obviously be racist and offensive…. but hold your horses! If I dropped the phrase “racial equality” into my speech that would make it OK again. Words matter.

    Playing the helpless, weak, damsel in distress is obviously the very opposite of ‘gender equality’ and ‘female empowerment’ – it is in fact reinforcing patriarchal gender stereotypes which come from the past where women were considered to be entitled to protection and resources from dutiful, self sacrificing patriarchal men. This provision of protection and resources by men was justified by the harsh environments and scarce resources of the time (due to lack of technology). When most resources required manual labour women depend on men to survive – especially when pregnant/ nursing/ raising children. In return women rewarded men with a degree of social status …….. and an invitation to have sexual relationships with women of course!

    These days technology has created a bunch of ways to earn a living which do NOT require manual labour, and it is this technology (not feminism) has made women a lot more financially independent. Plus modern technology has raised EVERYBODY’S standard of living which naturally gives everybody more choices in life and the ability to pursue hobbies, travel the world etc etc etc All good stuff 🙂

    So when western women (force their children to) play the role of helpless victim and oppressed downtrodden slave this is as ridiculous as it is offensive. Defining women as victims and begging for help strips all women of their agency and reduces women to the level of ‘acted upon’ objects.

    But – hold your horse again! We’re missing something vitally important here. Can you see what it is?

    These self identifying victims wallowing in their lack of agency are also swearing and acting all sassy. Swearing and sass (like the phrase “gender equality”) has the magical ability to turn playing the professional victim into the very opposite of that. By swearing and being sassy these girls have turned themselves from helpless victims ……… into ’empowered’ helpless victims.

    Being ‘an empowered helpless victim’ gives a feminist all the benefits of being a helpless victim (free stuff, special treatment, no personal or social responsibilities and the right to take up everybody’s time, effort, money and attention)….. while at the same time allowing them to be assertive, domineering, completely un-oppressed (and actually rather privileged) and completely lacking in respect or humility or gratitude for the enormous burden that they are on the rest of society…. particularly on men who, more than anyone, are the ones working all hours of the day and night to pay (via taxes) for their free stuff and special treatment. The bastards.

    • Curiosetta, you wrote me a big long thing about what rape culture is and is not. And you did so, to try and cause me pain more than to clarify anything. NEWS FLASH: I’m not in need of your help, enlightenment, debate, or call to action. You’ve gotten yourself all twisted around in your thinking no matter what “facts” you believe you possess. DO not contact me on wordpress in any blog space or discussion on rape and feminism. I am not your forum. I am not your audience. I am not your tool. I am not Curious about you.

      (I replied here and not to your original comment to me that showed up in my list of word bubbles… as that was probably deleted by the author at some point for obvious reasons. I hope she feel free to delete this one by me as well… because you and I will not be speaking again.)

  47. Fuck is a negative word, it promotes negative thoughts.

  48. with the death of little pageant girls like JonBenet Ramsey, the “reality shows” and exploitation of girls like “Honey Boo Boo” and books by Maya Angelou, I know Why the Caged Bird Sings, where an eight year old is raped by an adult… I’d say that little girls of all types and through time are in the know about molestation and rape. The for profit t-shirt company can be added to the list as exploitive as much as for raising awareness… and discussion. Feminist ideas and slogans can’t be “ripped off”. Those bumper sticker and poster slogans are public domain for the sake of the wider cause… Feminism can be spun and words can be misinterpreted to be used against us, but that’s political. These girls who made money for their acting gigs won’t be harmed for life by asking about or knowing about rape. They would be harmed for life if they got raped… and so maybe this will prevent them from falling into absurd beauty standards… I think it’s great if it could be kept simple and about body boundaries and saying no and don’t touch me… but in the modern age with sex trafficking, child porn, and rape stats rising not falling, the video commercial is not the problem. It’s indicating a sea change in awareness… I’m not condoning or condemning the video and don’t need to watch it to understand what our girls are being put through from every angle. We are being raped out of our power… our voices… our lives…and it’s good for girls to know this no matter the debate about silly shirts…

  49. It’s both offensive and exploitative. Also it’s disgusting. What is wrong with these people that make these stupid videos?? I would like to congratulate the parents of these lovely girls, they are well on their way to becoming enraged, vile, cussing, empowered little witches. yuck.

    • hi my life as a home schooling house wife…
      the video and the parents might offend your particular sensibilities, but what’s really wrong isn’t the parents raising “vile little witches” (which is very mean harsh language you used to entrap and silence these girls further btw…) but rather it’s RAPE that’s wrong. RAPE is causing the commercialism and capitalization, the backlashes between women and girls who should be on the same side, and I think a discussion of the video and it’s qualities quality or merits is in order, but to cast “vile little witch spells” on the matter feels all the more degrading to women, girls and to me as a reader. And it makes me kinda want to use the F-word… and home school you on a few nuances.

      • I don’ care what makes you want to swear. Please take your rage to someone who does care. I have every right to my comment, thank you. I doubt you could “home school” me on anything, and I respectfully decline the offer.

        • Your words about vile little witches is a reflection of you. No one else. Peace to you and yours.

          • No, you are wrong. Please don’ imply that I am a vile little witch and then wish me “peace” in the same breath. I am not the one teaching my daughters to have a miserable, bitter and victimized attitude. I also don’t teach my daughters that it is alright to cuss like sailors as long as they are feeling sufficently enraged at the time. I teach my daughters self control, confidence and a little something called CLASS.

            • Then where is your “class”? You are name calling and that generally stems from a projection of ones personal feelings and so there ya go…
              Teaching you daughters an appropriate time to cuss like a sailor is an interesting idea… my father was in the Navy and so believe me you… I know the worst kind of sexist jokes perpetuated by a father who believes he’s entitled because he served and because of his generation… and I understand what “class” is and what “classism” is. And these don’t belong in the discussion. Are our daughters “classy” isn’t the issue. Do they ‘present” in public so they are accepted as “classy” and not “witches” is not really the issue either. I commented on your degrading language because it insults girls and parents and I realize parents are the most self critical and therefore most critical of others as a species goes… because as parents you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t proverbially speaking. I apologize for any misperception that I am attacking you. And I do wish you peace especially if we do not get along. More so then. I am sincere in that. I am a rape survivor. And an advocate. I do not victimize women girls men mothers or any other people. I can be misunderstood and I can be brusque. Thank you for you dialogue.

      • Hi, I just want to make sure that you know that the little boys that grow up to be RAPERS statistically were most likely raised by a woman. So you might want to look at the parenting of these male children instead of going on and on about how men are raping women and how wrong it is. That way the issue would be addressed at the source. Once they are grown it’s a little late to make changes.

        • Are you seriously telling me to blame mothers for Rape, Melanie Hall? Are you actually presuming that I have no knowledge of rape and how it is hushed, perpetuated, and enforced, Melanie Hall? Are you telling me that mothers who have been raped historically and oppressed by men, should know how and what to do all the time? Are you telling me that I don’t know about parents? That I haven’t been part of a task force against sexual assault? That I haven’t read and worked in this area? That I’m not a teacher? You suggest I don’t believe men need to take charge of their behavior and raise boys better as much as women need to be held responsible? You think I don’t think parenting is hard? You don’t think I know that depending on the socio economic background it differs in taboo and understanding that breaks a chain of violence? And that extremist religions hide behind a veil of culture to perpetuate rape culture? You think I haven’t been bombarded by media that has perpetuated rape culture? You think I don’t know which way is up, Melanie Hall? Parents need to learn how to protect their kids. And sometimes that comes after the tragic fact. That means don’t hush it or excuse it. Don’t tolerate it. Not from peers or adults. And there are many different approaches and our language is hostile and hot and ready for a fight because I don’t want it to happen any more… and this make some people tell me to step off of my “rage”. Why? Why would I do that? I should be a happy rape victim? So with girls and women, I’d like to be gentle…(not that boys and men aren’t raped and I do not think this is excusable either) I’d like to not make it attack and defense, ya know? Don’t diffuse the cause. Don’t become the “abuser” or the “bully” or misdirect the facts… and so this is good. A good dialogue, I think. Ask me what I know and where I stand before you presume however. Because these tiny comment areas do not allow a full human. Our views are limited and our judgements should be taken with as much objectivity as possible so that we don’t offend one another. I’ve got no problem with being honest with you. I’m SO not into “blaming” bad mothers for creating rapists. There may be bad moms who play a part in the cycles of abuse… but don’t go after women who were trained to be domestic chattel during their generation… or whatever. It’s all context and rather than blaming… okay so we study sociology and psychology and addiction and cycles of violence and war and all the baby booms and Viola! RAPE culture. Do we need to discuss anything else, Melanie? Or are we good?

          • I hear your rage against the machine. But I’m not sure why you think that teaching boys as children is not the logical solution. I hear you screaming for awareness which is great. However, awareness doesn’t really make any changes. Parents, especially mothers (because statistically they are the primary), have a great deal of feminine power to truly make a difference. I sincerely don’t consider that blame. I consider it very empowering for women.

            • Yes, boys need to be taught as an enormous part of the solution, that’s not up for debate… Statistically boys emulate fathers and not mothers and so it’d be good for fathers to be present for role modeling in self control as well as respect for self and others. We don’t allow boys room for anything much than aggression and we don’t consider that they are in fact more emotional than girls and so deserve help in dealing with emotions. Language too, needs to be debunked for it’s patriarchal entitlement and privileges which attributes to desensitizing and minimizing sexist and abusive institutions. Mothers are not one “block” and inequities in the treatment of women and the inadequate support provided to mothers, suggests that male oppression is the source of the problem. I am not disempowering women or men in any way shape or form.

          • but surely you’re looking for an explanation for misogyny and rape? Something other than Original Sin, something in the real world?

            • I don’t know what you question is neighsayer. I don’t believe in “original sin” although I understand how religious belief systems (particularly extremist ones) have historically condoned marital rape and as it was “legal” rape as wives were property and had no rights, that rape could not even be discussed as rape appropriately until modern day in many instances. I am not looking to blame for the sake of scapegoating. I’m looking to the sources of abuse and how to break the cycles of abuse. When mothers are involved as rapists and or bystanders of rape they are those things, But if you people want me to blame “victims” and mothers as the “reason” for rape happening, then you are not being reasonable. Patriarchal institutions “rule” and rape. Those subtle and overt cases of misogyny and rape in language, in sports, in military, in religion, and in government, on college campuses etc. need to be debunked, discussed, and changed for the sake of all people. So there isn’t one “explanation” There is a historical pattern. Historical patterns. And if you are asking me if I want to know why men hate women and rape them and to blame the mother, I think you are only trying to be offensive.

              • no, not trying, but maybe it is offensive. So I get the impression you read my answers to the others here . . . when you say ” Those subtle and overt cases of misogyny and rape in language, in sports, in military, in religion, and in government, on college campuses etc.” I would like to note the first part, ‘SUBTLE and overt’ and ask if you think these subtle forms have more power in propagating this culture than parents overtly punishing and controlling their kids? I’m sure you’ve heard of some mothers consciously or unconsciously acting out their frustration and rage against the misogyny they’ve suffered on their young sons?
                I’m not trying to take blame away from men and place it solely on mothers, but surely some portion of it needs to go there, surely some portion of it needs to go to the people raising these misogynists? To take another tack, do you think women blaming adult men – underdogs complaining to the group in power about the group in power – is succeeding? And are you sure that attacking this problem in adulthood is more powerful than addressing the roots of most social problems, early childhood?

                • Hi neighsayer, It’s very normal and in fact healthy for an underclass or an oppressed people to revolt after historical oppression. So as for finding success in “complaining” to a “group in power” that’s a pretty casual way of putting it. If people are simply to accept abuse and oppression I suppose wives should not be voting, and stay chattel and we should still have slavery in the U.S. So yeah, we’ve made progress doing a heck of a lot more than “complaining” as well as we have not made enough progress. As we are an evolving species in an ever changing politic, we have many chances for set backs and improvements. I don’t advance women to the detriment of boys or men. I have worked with abused boys and I know men who have been raped by their fathers while their mothers stood by their husbands and I know men who were raped by their mothers boyfriends… I do not in anyway want you to feel that I would condone a mothers behavior more than a fathers. But if you want to talk about history and power structures, they are male dominated. Being that faith and belief is not something very many people will give up, and as their churches are perpetuating behind cultural acceptance of child abuse and child-rape and submissive roles for women, these women are responsible for their part in passing on such things as well as being victims of the male patriarchy, so it’s a very tricky to “blame” anybody. So we point out specifics. We say which words sound violent. How advertising is using sex. What laws are being made that cut education or health for women. Etc. It’s not to “blame”. It’s to recognize the problems and how they accumulate until we snap. And as I point out problems with religions, I’m not suggesting secular homes are not free of abuse. Atheists can be just as damaging emotionally as any religious dogma. But culturally the separation between church and state is always playing on and feeding on gender stereotypes among other things and using them to divide or mobilize us politically, so I mention these things.
                  I don’t think you should feel bad about yourself as a man and women’s libbers who did that to you were operating out of anger/fear/new learning that could not be helped at the time. I am sorry to hear you were excluded and that it alienated or harmed you. I am finding that “feminists” range so widely that there are many divides among women too. Some “slut” shame. Others defend “sluts”. Some are so wounded by rape they can not allow men the chances they are currently asking for regarding trust and should not be expected to. Some are clear on the definition of feminism and that it means gender equality. Equal pay. Equal rights. Equal opportunity.
                  Young feminists who want to give the word up because men are feeling rejected and hated, don’t understand what they are giving up. Old feminists who can not allow transgendered people into the movement or who fear lesbians rejected an entire group of people who helped advance the cause. But fear of labels and stigma drove/drives the feminists apart too. My own life experiences tell me that I must advocate for women and girls in the context of feminism. The sexual harassment I’ve endured isn’t right. I am for human rights. And I don’t want you to experience abuse but if you think I’m abusive to you or excluding you, you aren’t listening or reading carefully. I’m hyper aware that men train and condition men to be aggressive when you are all capable of far more. That’s not to be condescending… it’s a fact that men and women are capable of being friends. Of talking about what hurts, why and how it hurts and each of us can determine if we wanted to make the other truly feel diminished. I don’t believe we do want to cause harm to each other. I think we want to end the harm. It’s more complicated than this… but part of getting to the solution is about anger. Listening to the rage. Knowing it’s coming out of pain. Turning that anger into productive healing or constructive laws is not easy… boys don’t always know they’ve raped a girl… Men can tell them these things and help stop the cycle. That’s what I’m asking you to do. I love boys and men. I’m a wife and a sister and an aunt and a Giants baseball fan… Many good men in my life have helped teach me how to be a feminist. And I was a preschool teacher so early childhood education means a lot to me. I appreciate you clarifying your background and sharing what’s personal for you. Much respect.

        • not the topic at hand, but I’ll take the opening. You’re right, I do think there is something to be said, that most folks in our world are raised by their mothers, and raised with fairly constant control and punishment, which has been shown to produce the same suite of negative outcomes as outright illicit abuse. I think we should indeed wonder if the rape culture and misogyny in general may be a rage reaction against the gender that raised, and therefore punished us.

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  52. I have read that some people believe that the girls were old enough to understand the issues.

    The fact is that we don’t hold children legally accountable for their actions, because they are not capable of consent.

    So, for me, part of the problem is that these girls have been thrust into a situation they couldn’t have possibly anticipated. Many adults have issues dealing with sudden fame and media attention. Were these girls ready to hear millions of people question the competence of their parents? Were they ready to be recognized in a restaurant as one of those “fuck girls”? Were they ready for the attention at school (I can’t imagine that it has escaped the attention of their peers)?

    And while children may have had the ability to *comprehend* what they have been told, did they have the ability to do comparative research and come to their own conclusions? Or, in this case, were they convinced that what they were told was true, and accepted it at face value (because they trusted the adults who told them it was in their best interest to participate)? Having only one choice on the ballot is not “freedom” or “consent”. One might wonder how this level of extreme emotionalism is any different from Jesus Camp, Westboro church, or other situations where children passionately espouse values (with their parents all the while convinced that the child understands and means every word they say).

    The truth is that even at adolescence, the brain is still going through transformational processes. Regardless of what we *believe* our children can do, evidence shows that there are still several key areas of the brain (those involved with decision making) that simply do not develop until later in life. Which again, is why we do not hold children legally accountable for their actions until they are actually capable of consent.

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  54. Pingback: Is “F-Bomb Princesses For Feminism” The Most Unethical Ad Ever? | Ethics Alarms

  55. “Commodification of feminism is not empowerment”

    This is a perfect statement that also describes my thoughts on the Pantene and Always ads as well.

  56. after reading your blog, i am heavily inclined to agree with you, my mother had taught my sisters that “young ladies shouldn’t curse to get their point across.” because the first thing on their mind upon seeing the video is ‘who is the piece of trash that taught them how that it’s okay to talk like that.’ and the message in their ad is lost, and the focus will be on little girls cursing. i use the phrase about ladies shouldn’t curse toward my daughter, i call her princess, because i treat her like royalty, i reward her for good behavior, and discipline her when she’s out of line, or did something wrong with timeouts, or a denial of privilege for a day. If she curses, it comes out of her allowance, and i tell her, ‘A lady doesn’t curse.’ if i had to point a quarter in the swear jar, so does she. Luckily, she’s only cursed twice so far, and both times she didn’t know she was cursing, she picked the word up at school. as for whether a child knows about racism, when i was 8, i never knew the N word was racially offensive until a teacher told me in school. Children before the age of 10 are still developing mentally and have yet to make an identity, i hope when these kids turn 12, that they’d be embarassed about what they did, and work hard to prove they are not the person in the video.

  57. Pingback: Followup to My Last Post « Ponderings from a Procrastinating Prognosticator

  58. Sorry, I haven’t seen the video and to be honest to myself I don’t really want to, especially after reading the post and comments made. I’m not sure why, but I just don’t like to hear swearing, yet on occasion I have done so and sometimes profusely (stubbed toe, cut finger or just plain really, really, really angry).
    Anyhoo, the post gave me a thought though, but I wouldn’t like to see it made into a video:
    Imagine a group of some very polite young boys, talking in all sorts of accents, very respectfully chatting to each other about rape prevention. Not the usual victim talk about how girls, women, boys and men should avoid being themselves and not to dare to go where they want, but a talk to each other about how not to rape. Something along the line of:
    “We’re going out Friday right, do we all agree to carry our rape whistles?” ~ “Yes”~ “Yup” ~ “Sure” ~ “Yes I agree” ~ “You bet” ~ “and if any of us find that we’re about to rape someone, we blow the whistle until someone comes to stop us right?” ~ “I agree” ~ “Yes”~ “Yup” ~ “Sure” ~ “I’m in” ~ “I agree too” ~ “Oh and of course never to put drugs in other peoples drinks right?” ~ “I agree” ~ “Yes”~ “Yup” ~ “Sure” ~ “I agree” ~ “Yes and let’s keep up the Buddy System my friends, that if it is inconvenient for any one of us to stop ourselves from raping, we could ask a trusted friend to accompany us AT ALL TIMES.” ~ “I agree” ~ “Yes”~ “Yup” ~ “Sure” ~ “I agree” ~ “I totally agree”

    How does that comment read to your kind hearts?

  59. All of the judgements calling other readers morons and vile and ignorant and saying who is better as parents and people because they do not cuss and because they call their girls princesses and have cuss jars…etc. or because they know what CLASS is, is simply a CHILDISH slam fest. The video is in question because it makes money on feminism and uses little girls which the author is calling exploitive. Well for the record, The video is exploitive and YET it did help feminists talk and it brings up the stereotypes girls endure not just from the video perspective but because so many of the readers of this post are F**king hypocrites. Cussing is NOT the problem. Little girls are developing eating disorders as early as nine years old… And I’m not saying kids have full comprehension skills at all, but gauging from the readers willingness to pile on, it’s easy to see why your girls are actually doomed. AND it’s not because of the video in question.

  60. Pingback: Sugar and Spice and All Things Nice? FCKH8’s Campaign Speaks Volumes - SheRa

  61. What saddens me is that you’re not kidding. The POINT of the video is to raise awareness. And it did. PERIOD. Sure there are tshirts to be sold. Tshirts which promote equality and when worn are a solid reminder to all people that women should be, truly, equal to men. And the thought that these girls can’t begin to understand what they are saying is moronic. Why couldn’t they? Sorry, but it does not take a brain surgeon to figure out what equality is…I’m sure these girls were well aware of the meaning of what they were saying. It’s ridiculous HOGWASH to discredit the making of this ad. PEOPLE NEED TO MAKE REAL MOVES IN ORDER TO AFFECT CHANGE, AND FIRST YOU HAVE TO GET INTO THE PSYCHE OF THE MASSES. I mean can you imagine: ROSA PARKS: “Well, I’d love to take a stand and sit in the front of the bus, but I’m afraid I might offend someone, or be misunderstood by someone who then might write about me and why what I did was wrong.” FUCK THAT. WE NEED TO TAKE ACTION TO CHANGE THE MINDSET OF HUMANITY. NOT SIT BACK AND BE SUCH SISSIES. So, the girls are saying fuck. I get it…it’s off putting, but so what? It’s for a good cause. I don’t care if these people make money from their product. They donate a bit, but more IMPORTANTLY, THESE TSHIRTS WILL BE WORN AND EVERY TIME SOMEONE SEES ONE, THEY WILL BE REMINDED HOW UNFAIR THE WORLD IS IF YOU ARE A WOMAN. GET OVER IT. GEEZ, AND THIS CRITICAL BLOG WAS WRITTEN BY A WOMAN? I SAY: KIND OF IDIOTIC AND SHORT SIGHTED. Some people will take umbrage with anything if it gives them a chance to write disparagingly about it. WOMEN SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR THE CREATION OF THIS VIDEO. ALL PEOPLE SHOULD, BUT WOMEN ESPECIALLY. wake up lady!

  62. so positive feminist messages are negated by the horrible evil of selling T-shirts? This is not looking at it the right way. This argument, that spreading a good message only counts if it’s done for free? That’s the same way oil industry trolls are slagging climate scientists, because climate scientists need to eat, they need to earn a living.

    I won’t accuse you, but I will warn you that it’s easy to interpret your argument here as one that in the long run could harm these good messages getting out, and one that could well be viewed as being based in some status quo, possibly religious offense taken by the shock of seeing this unladylike language from these little princesses.

    I respectfully suggest you take a step back, try to see this in the long perspective, like who is spreading good, feminist messages effectively by selling T-shirts, and who has been put in the position of complaining about having to watch young girls swearing . . .

  63. Even if it wasn’t selling t-shirts, it’s just a lame concept. Ooh little kids saying fuck, so edgy and original… It’s just trying so hard to be IN YOUR FACE, truly cringeworthy.

  64. Pingback: “No FCKHing Way” | thiswillbeablog

  65. I also notice a few mentions of FCKH8’s “reputation” and thing charities have done in regards to it – and no citations? You want to use that stuff, you have to show us.

  66. One more: I don’t support anything like censorship, so arguments about what those little girls should not know about at their tender age doesn’t move me. Kids should not be censored from, they need that info. “Age appropriate” information is an outdated concept; it is a form of censorship. When do we want them to learn about rape? Kids that age get raped sometimes. Is that how we want them to learn about it?

    Again, with this argument, you are (accidentally, I hope) arguing for the side of the status quo.

    I mean, I know the sexual revolution got co-opted and has become the porn culture – but it is repression and censorship that is the root of that, not freedom and open conversation.

  67. Reblogged this on outsidethebox85 and commented:
    I have watched this video and i guess in the us they like to go extreme as it delivers the message. Uk did do a kill your speed advert but it was taken off the televisions as too many people got upset about it. Its a harsh way but its real! It happens like that so why not show others who speed. I think the video is great!

  68. To the author of this blog. I have no idea if your post is what you consider successful but it sure has brought out the people who hate girls and women and even when think they are defending morality, they are caging girls. As a rape survivor I feel hated in your space and without ally. I don’t blame the video. I think many of your readers are looking to find more reasons to justify their abusive language, thoughts, and patterns. Many are actually showing signs of abuse which are playing out on others… and maybe that’s interesting in a sociological way. Inviting people to attack the video did not defend the girls you feared for as a parent or teacher… This whole thing makes me sick.

    • if you’re including me in hat statement, you’re wrong. I was raised by women, my mother and my sisters, and my sisters and many of their friends were big into the Women’s Lib’ movement as it was called then. It affected me to the point that I too disliked men, and disliked myself as one of them. I was well into adulthood before I noticed that I needed a little liberation, that my maleness wasn’t my fault.
      I come to this argument not out of misogyny, but out of a deep belief in the power of child-rearing to harm us all, and the hugely missed opportunity that most of our childhoods have been to make real changes in the world. If you think women are the most oppressed and abused people on Earth, you may have forgotten about children.

  69. The long and the short of it for me is that very young girls have been exploited by a growing field of cause marketing operated by for-profit companies lead the public to believe that their money is going to worthy nonprofit organizations where in reality the very small donations make by these companies are just a way for them to avoid paying equitable taxes on their profits. Want to make a donation to help fight sexual violence? Don’t believe the hype. Make your contribution to a legitimate nonprofit organization. You don’t need a trinket in return

  70. Thank you for bringing this to my attention – I actually had not heard of or seen this viral video… I completely agree with you on this.

  71. I think overall you make a very valid point and argue it in an articulate and well-strucrured way, without going into anything deeper though, I think it says alot about the company or organisation if they felt it necessary to use this sort of language to make a point anyway; did they not have intelligent-enough people to come up with an effective-yet-appropriate way of selling a t-shirt or bringing attention to their cause (whatever their reason was), I’m just an average woman/parent and I don’t have to explore the politics of it to think “how pathetic and unimaginative for an organisation to stoop to such low levels for a bit of attention”, swearing fot shock-value (as you pointed out), how unoriginal. I wouldn’t buy a t-shirt or donate to this cause and purely because of the represention, the organisation should take into account that decent, intelligent people don’t respond to this sort of crap.

  72. I share my passionate opinions on many matters on my blog, hopefully you’ll check it out and let me know what you think, it would much appreciated 🙂 @www.getresurgatie.wordpress.com

  73. Don’t know why that didn’t come out right…www.getresurgatized.wordpress.com

  74. One thing about watching these girls cuss about adult topics for me, is that seeing kids curse is itself a change in the world that I want to see – as opposed to no kids ever being allowed to, when we see kids not cursing, ever, even though we do, and really very many of them do too, that just shows the control and intimidation we see too much of. We never punished our kids for anything, and I assure you all, when my girls cursed at that age, they were not being exploited – they just weren’t being controlled, punished and intimidated. And the adult nature of the conversation – when it was my girls – meant that they hadn’t been lied to or important information kept from them.

    Conventionality and tradition are the enemy of real change. If everything the way we’ve been doing it for generations was all good, then we wouldn’t have the problems we have now, including misogyny and rape culture.

  75. It seems that critiques of the method of delivery are welcome here, but comments on the misleading nature of the ad’s content are not.

  76. Pingback: FCKH8’s “F-Bomb Princess” video isn’t offensive—it’s exploitative. :REBLOG | Sticky Boogers

  77. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed, I FCKH8 are really interested in helping they can become non-profit.

  78. Pingback: Potty-Mouthed Princesses- Love It Or Hate It? | Women's iLab

  79. I’m not sure i agree – It’s refreshing to hear girls not towing the submissive line and talking about things which are very real, and will certainly have an impact on their lives. I accept that it’s a cynical marketing ploy and because I’m definitely not qualified to judge FCKH8’s morals or how well or badly they managed the girls’ recruitment, understanding, consent e.t.c, I can only draw conclusions on the content. … I don’t agree with Belle Jar’s position, I think that many girls in that age range have heard of rape. For many their first encounter with the word is as a casual joke, someone taking command of your facebook identity, a scrum on the playground or even a bad haircut. Televised stand up comedy and sitcoms regularly contain rape jokes, most 6-13 year olds have access to E4, where the offending episodes are screened in loops, at a friend’s house if not at home. Then there’s the news: tabloids, particularly the Sun, have explicit rape headlines plastered all over the front covers on a regular basis (and then an almost naked mute woman just over the page), not to mention adverts and pop music that send girls strong messages that they should be sexualised and messages from all over the place, including judges, tv presenters and footballers that victims are to blame. Yes, it’s shocking to see five children ask which of them will be raped and it’s in poor taste, I agree, but it’s also statistically true. I truly believe that If more young people had open conversations about sex and consent before they reached puberty, fewer of them would be raped and sexually assaulted. And as for the swearing, so fucking what? I think the world would be a better place if films were graded 18 according to casual references to sexual violence rather than the word ‘cunt’. I hope that the children’s participation was well handled and I hope that they haven’t sold any of their pretty rubbish t-shirts, but I’d rather children were a part of an age-appropriate conversation about the darker side of the society in which they live before they come face-to-face with the reality as adults.t’s refreshing to hear girls not towing the submissive line and talking about things which are very real, and will certainly have an impact on their lives. I accept that it’s a cynical marketing ploy and because I’m definitely not qualified to judge FCKH8’s morals or how well or badly they managed the girls’ recruitment, understanding, consent e.t.c, I can only draw conclusions on the content. … I don’t agree with Belle Jar’s position, I think that many girls in that age range have heard of rape. For many their first encounter with the word is as a casual joke, someone taking command of your facebook identity, a scrum on the playground or even a bad haircut. Televised stand up comedy and sitcoms regularly contain rape jokes, most 6-13 year olds have access to E4, where the offending episodes are screened in loops, at a friend’s house if not at home. Then there’s the news: tabloids, particularly the Sun, have explicit rape headlines plastered all over the front covers on a regular basis (and then an almost naked mute woman just over the page), not to mention adverts and pop music that send girls strong messages that they should be sexualised and messages from all over the place, including judges, tv presenters and footballers that victims are to blame. Yes, it’s shocking to see five children ask which of them will be raped and it’s in poor taste, I agree, but it’s also statistically true. I truly believe that If more young people had open conversations about sex and consent before they reached puberty, fewer of them would be raped and sexually assaulted. And as for the swearing, so fucking what? I think the world would be a better place if films were graded 18 according to casual references to sexual violence rather than the word ‘cunt’. I hope that the children’s participation was well handled and I hope that they haven’t sold any of their pretty rubbish t-shirts, but I’d rather children were a part of an age-appropriate conversation about the darker side of the society in which they live before they come face-to-face with the reality as adults.

  80. The acres of negative comments about this video are only because the girls used the F-word liberally. No other reason. If they hadn’t done, then the video would have been forgotten in five minutes. What would be the point of making a video in support of feminism that doesn’t get watched?

  81. Y’all got to watch this it’s rushed Rufus video pay attention.

  82. WOW. I have never seen the video and hope I never do. Just hearing about girls that young discussing “Which of us will it be” knots my stomach. It also makes me think of how disgusted I am with those stage parents. Many levels of “Just say no”.

  83. I also agree, it’s exploitative, I thought it was actually offensive! Glad i’m not the only one.

    • Has this message mess Video been settled? If a company allows young girls to use curse words, then it must be approved by an Industry who doesn’t give a damn what the public thinks. Glad the parents got a BIG paycheck so their little starlets can say the F word on camera! We are facing Ebola problems, who in the hell cares about this anymore? sho buz

      • I feel almost disgusted watching her! I just can’t believe her parents take pride in that. Shea going to grow up thinking its OK to act like that

        • it’s all razzle-dazzle em,’ and make a buck. Probably when the girls are grown up, some spiteful person will show this video to embarrass those girls, you know some of society are deranged that way and it probably will follow the girls around the rest of their lives or get them a Hollywood contract into Adult Movies! No one has respect for wholesomeness anymore. Thank God for good examples like my friend Annette Funicello, never did anything offensive in all her Hollywood Years and even appearing in New Orleans several times in the American-Italian parades. She was a joy and I miss her persona. You know, I interviewed Richard Sherman a long time ago and when I told him Annette was a good friend, he complimented me by saying “Ed, you have good taste in music!” Well good taste today is hard to find! sho buz

  84. But is the reasoning behind it truly an issue? I know plenty of people that will not buy T-shirts that are talking about this ad. I don’t find it exploitative; these girls are going to the victims of sexism. Every woman has been at some point.

  85. Why shouldn’t girls know what rape and sexual assault is? I think youngs girls need to know because its terrible. When i was their age my mom told me what sexual assault was and rape along with the proper names of both the female & male anatomy which is one of the reason im in school for nursing right now. Children can’t be sugar coated innthis world because i have seen the results and its not pretty. The other day a 22 year old friend of mine told me about an incident of where she was at a party and went to sleep and some guy came into the room and began to touch her sexually and asked me if that was sexual assault. So yes young girls,teens all females should know what sexual assault ,sexual harassment and rape is

  86. Pingback: Are you “part of the problem”? Yes, if you treat social justice as a zero-sum game. | Rebecca Hains

  87. I think a child’s ‘understandability’ has to do with each individual child and a variety of societal-factors, parenting influences, and etc. We should not generalize that all children would not understand, nor that they all do understand ‘the agenda’. Some of those children do understand to an extent, the extent remains in the threshold of the knowledge they have of life, history, experiences, etc. However, 9 year old me did not have the knowledge that 13 year old me or 20 year old me had. So, I think it is fair to say that these girls had limited comprehension of the agenda, if any at all, mainly due to factors surrounding age progression and the scope of knowledge for the child. However, my current focus and studies is not child psychology and I am not eligible to apply ‘PhD.’ at the end of my signature for a few more years. So, merely an educated opinion. So…F***

  88. Kids cussing for shock value is one thing, but it was really disturbing hearing these little girls talk about rape. I can’t see any reason to exploit a child like this.

  89. I agree with this article. Well done for the strong arguments and doesn’t matter how old the girl. they should not be use for this advertisement at all!

    I am totally against using feminist ideology to increased somebody profit as it will not change our world. It is similar with advertisement campaign, for instead the new issue with Victoria’s Secret. Consider how women is dehumanized to increase the company sale. Look at my blog to see how media using women for their good for centuries: http://mediaincharge.wordpress.com/2014/10/31/gender-role-use-to-increase-the-sale/

  90. Pingback: Feminism, we have a problem…. | Flawless Feminism: A Pop Culture Perspective

  91. Hey!! I was interested in exploring this idea further! Is there any other authors or feminist theorists or anything more scholarly that someone would like to recommend for me to read? just pertaining to this video and the idea of exploitation for the cause and using women and children to sell goods.

  92. Thank you for providing a forum where this subject is able to be discussed. Many blessings to you.

  93. Pingback: Feminism Trend No. 187788: F-Bomb Princesses - helloiammariam

  94. Pingback: Article on Marketing Campaigns Challenging the Disney Princess Mindset Leading into Fuzzy Feminist Ideals | joannainc

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