|Mom Melissa Ziegler was shocked about the routine,|
although she didn't forbid her kids to participate.
Maybe networks are finally listening to casual viewers, child development experts and even celebrities (Katherine Heigl, no less!) about protecting reality T.V kids. When the public expressed outrage over an episode that featured the famous Dance Moms girls in risqué Showgirls costumes that bared so much skin even their pushy moms were mortified, Lifetime quietly did something about it. The episode did not re-air tonight as it normally would have just before the premiere of the new episode, is no longer available on the Lifetime web site (the latest full episode was always available for viewing online following the air date), it has been pulled from Hulu and other similar sources, and is difficult if not impossible to find on Youtube. Radaronline still has a clip of the routine, but we expect that to disappear soon as well.
Here's what prompted Lifetime to do something about the horrible mistake they made airing this episode:
Psychologist Rachel A. Sussman said: "Forcing a child to dress and perform in a provocative way can have wide spread negative effects. If you put a child into an adults-only situation (where they clearly don’t belong), they may be very confused about their developmental stage and their sexual identity. It can cause depression, anxiety and low self esteem. Furthermore, they may have trust issues. Also, they are receiving very poor parenting, which can set them up for a lifetime of negative attachment issues."
Actress Katherine Heigl said: "I kept thinking all these girls were missing is a pole! I was also horrified by the way their instructor spoke to them when she felt they weren’t up to snuff. It was demeaning, belittling, and downright unkind. My daughter was in the room at the time as was my mother and I kept looking over at my perfect, innocent and beautiful child wondering how can I protect her from what the world is becoming. It terrifies me, the amount of value we place on a woman’s looks, body, and ability to drop it like it’s hot on the dancefloor. It’s one thing to walk into a club and see twentysomethings embracing their sexuality and having some fun, but it’s another thing altogether watching seven-year-olds shake their booties, bellies, and nonexistent boobies on a stage in a room full of adults and be handed a trophy for it. What in the world are we telling them? That sexy is the prize and is the talent they have?"
Psychologist Dr. Nancy Irwin: “As a treatment professional of sex offenders, I can tell you that adults who are attracted to minors definitely seek out shows just like this to whet their appetites. They may attend the shows in-person, watch them on TV and seek out Facebook still photos and YouTube clips to pleasure themselves. The sexual body movements are more concerning than the costumes.”
Journalist Daisy Dumas: "Lifetime's Dance Moms has hit new lows by asking its child contestants - the youngest of whom is just eight-years-old - to dress in nude bikinis and perform a burlesque routine on stage. The raunchy dance moves are usually the domain of striptease experts, the X-rated acts brimming with nudity, nipple tassels and sexually explicit poses."
Human behavior expert Patrick Wanis, PhD: “This condones, encourages and motivates adults to imagine little girls dancing naked for their pleasure. Of course it will arouse pedophiles and offer them a new legal avenue to engage in their lustful thoughts as they watch the little girls ‘nude’ on television.”