Anyone who’s spent a lot of time around children knows that hearing kids curse is like watching South Park or Family Guy: It’s wrong and bad, and you’re not supposed to think it’s amusing, but damn is it hilarious sometimes. Case in point: This video from FCKH8.com, in which little girls dressed as princesses tear apart rape culture, the gender pay gap, and culturally institutionalized sexism by talking like a character in a David Mamet play.
Highlights include: “Stop telling girls how to dress, and start telling boys not to fucking rape,” “I’m not some pretty fucking helpless princess in distress,” and “Pay up motherfucker! I shouldn’t need a penis to get paid.”
Yes, it’s an obvious grab for virality. Yes, the video is a paid advertisement for FCKH8, a for-profit T-shirt company, which might rub some people the wrong way. And yes, it does get a bit exploitative and uncomfortable when the cherubic little girls cite the statistic that one in five women are sexually assaulted in their lifetimes and then ask the viewer “which one of [them] will it be.”
But it’s a cute and funny video, and it gets the point across loud and clear: We, as a society, should be much less concerned about preserving the innocence of our children and much more concerned about building a world where it’s no longer OK for young girls and women to be harassed and sexualized.
Unfortunately (but unsurprisingly), many YouTubers completely missed the point. The ad was pulled on Wednesday due to complaints that the video violated YouTube’s terms of service. A FCKH8 spokesperson told Mashable that this complaint vindicated the whole point of the video: “It seems like this censorship … is because of user complaints about kids saying fuck. The video does not violate any user guidelines and with all the sexist content on both sites that is allowed to stay up, as well as content that uses this simple four-letter word, we are surprised that they chose to censor it.” (The clip is still up on Vimeo.)
The good folks over at Fox News also didn’t really seem to get the point. On The Five, Kimberly Guilfoyle, who earlier this week made headlines for telling young women to avoid the voting booths and focus on their Tinder profiles, cited FCKH8’s ad as an example of bad parenting, saying “the adults that made it should be ashamed of themselves.” Greg Gutfeld took her argument one step further, equating it to child abuse: “It’s clear these kids have little idea what they’re doing, or why. The irony is that they are talking about abuse while being used as props for profit.”
Of course, Gutfeld has a point: Some of the girls are probably too young to know the socioeconomic context of the gender wage gap, and maybe they don’t fully understand the history of gender politics and the feminist movement. But all things considered, they’re probably considerably more educated on these issues than most Fox News commenters.
H/T Mediaite | Screengrab via FCKH8.com/Vimeo