My daughter loves music. I have written extensively over the last couple of years (and blogs) about this love. This past Christmas, she discovered Justin Bieber – thank you VERY much “Arthur’s Christmas” and loves KidzBop. She sings along passionately and most of the time, it is delightful to watch.
I also allow her to listen to the radio some so she is familiar with a few current songs. She especially loves “Firework” by Katy Perry. She belts out the lyrics with as much gusto as Miss Katy herself and then when the song finishes, she talks about what the song means. She gets that it is about being yourself and feeling special. And it is because of that level of understanding that I am trying to have her avoid a certain song. One that you might not expect.
As I am sure that most of you know, the latest boy-band craze is “One Direction”. A quintet of baby faced boys, their big hit is “What Makes You Beautiful”. It is a catchy tune that seems innocuous at first.
It’s sung to an unsung beauty — a beautiful girl who doesn’t know that she’s beautiful. Well, having eaten up John Hughes’s films like popcorn in the theater, I have an appreciation for beautiful boys falling for the overlooked diamond-in-the-rough. But as I was singing along (yes, singing along — this song is insidious!), I really heard the song.
Oh oh,You don’t know you’re beautiful,
Oh oh,That’s what makes you beautiful
Insert record scratch here… What?
The song isn’t saying that she’s beautiful despite not knowing she’s beautiful. It’s saying she’s beautiful because she doesn’t know it. And I have a problem with that it.
Now you might be saying that I am splitting hairs but maybe it is a hair worth splitting. I want my daughter to know that she’s beautiful. I don’t want her to think that somehow hiding her light makes her more attractive. I’m not saying I want her to be egotistical or base her worth on beauty. But unlike the girl in the song (or the writer of this blog), I don’t want her smiling at the ground, insecure. I want her to feel beautiful and I want her to find a guy that thinks that is what makes her beautiful.
So, sorry boys but I’m hoping my daughter will take a different direction. I think we’ll stick with Katy Perry. She may have blue hair and whipped cream shooting out of her bikini top, but she celebrates who she is, just as she is. And in my mind, that makes her beautiful.
So in honor of my little firework…