About a Booby… and not the bird

I’m kinda on the fence on this one.

“Boobies” have made themselves into quite a controversy in schools of late.  Kids across the country are showing up with bracelets that say “I ♥ Boobies “, and they’re causing quite a stir.  Schools are banning them left and right.  Why?  Because “boobies” is inappropriate language, and carries sexual connotations.

One side of me says, “oh, unclench.  It’s for a good cause.”  But then the other half of me argues, “but this is just contributing to the crassness of our society.”

Ok, so the first side.  This side of me is just glad that it’s not that infernal Pink Ribbon again.  I’m so blasted sick of pink.  Don’t get me wrong… I completely understand, support, and have raised money for the cause.  In all honesty, I wish there was no need for any of this at all.  But when October rolls around, everything is going to be pink.  And I’m going to be so sick and tired of Breast Cancer that I will actively avoid anything pink.  Even if it has nothing to do with breast cancer awareness.  Anyway, this side of me thinks that it’s a clever slogan.  Not as clever as the “Save Second Base” t-shirt that I saw a couple weeks ago, but clever, nonetheless.  And frankly, clever sells bracelets, and t-shirts, and bags, and whatever else… which, in turn, generates money, which is the ultimate goal.  To generate money for the charity.  And hopefully, finally, ultimately, eradicate breast (and every other) cancer for good.

But the other side of me really hates the downslide that we’ve taken into crassness, and that side of me also sides with the schools that are banning the bracelets on the grounds of decency.  Yeah, I know that “boobies” isn’t a swear word, I know that kids say a lot worse, I know all that.  But at the same time, I’m the mother of a 7-year-old, and I’m trying to teach him not only the proper names for things, but also to respect women.  And how can he differentiate between my saying that “boobies” is inappropriate, and his friend’s big brother wearing a bracelet to school that says, “I ♥ boobies”?

And where does it end?  The biggest argument out there against these bracelets asks, “what if there’s a drive to raise awareness about testicular or prostate cancer?  Are we going to start seeing bracelets that say, ‘I love pricks?’ … or ‘Feel your balls?’“  It’s a valid question, and one that bears answering.  Where does the line get drawn?.  If “boobies” is ok in school, then you have to allow “prick”, don’t you? … equal treatment for everyone, after all.

Then there’s the other other side of the issue… The point of the slogan, according to a representative that I heard interviewed on the radio (and completely forgot to write down her name and other information), this slogan, and others, are valuable tools in raising basic awareness of breast cancer, and in getting ladies to do self-exams, get mammograms, and generally take better care of their breasts.  Ok, I can totally get behind that.  I’m all about staying healthy, and keeping The Girls intact and cancer-free.  But I really have to wonder… how many of the guys that are wearing these bracelets are doing it for breast cancer awareness, and how many are wearing them because, frankly, they really, honestly, love boobies?

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11 Responses to About a Booby… and not the bird

  1. Joy says:

    I “think” I know where I stand on this. At least for now. I may change my mind easily but really, I don’t see why kids need to wear bracelets like this to school. I find them totally inappropriate. That may show my age but I agree with your “I love pricks” or ‘Feel your balls.” It’s just not the place for it. It’s not necessary. If kids want to say “boobs” out on the playground between themselves and giggle, I think that’s fine and normal but I think this is going too far. I think it’s fine for going out on an adult at night but I don’t know why a child would even want to wear something like this or what parent would think it okay.

    I do find all the pink tiresome myself but I guess it’s politically incorrect to admit that out loud. Some things, imo, seem to get carried way too far. Do it for a week or whatever but I get sick of everything pink.

    The other thing is if you allow “boobie bracelets” then what about the next trend? Will this turn into “boobie” is okay but “prick” isn’t? I personally find the work prick like putting nails in my ears. To me, it’s a bad word where boobies is more humorous. So where would the line be drawn? I think it could lead to many more problems.

    At least in my opinion.

    • Laura says:

      You want the one that grates on me like nails on a chalk board? “Va-jay-jay”. AAK, I could barely TYPE it without getting the heebies!! And you just know, if there was a drive to beat cervical cancer, THAT would be the first word they’d choose!

      • SKL says:

        Ick, don’t give them any ideas!!

        • Laura says:

          I actually wrote to Glamour Magazine about a year ago and said that it was a disrespectful term, regardless how much Oprah uses it. Think about it… we’ve spent how many years getting to the point where we can actually use the word “vagina” (sorry) in a clinical, non-humorous way – like in some of the articles that their magazine publishes, and then they turn around and use THAT term??? I see it as far more derogatory than most of the words that are used to identify other body parts… come to think of it, I’ve never seen that slang word in that particular magazine again.

          • SKL says:

            I see it on a certain mom website all the time. I just think it’s childish. Why not just say “wee-wee” if you’re trying to cute it up? (Gross!)

      • SKL says:

        I hate the way the term “vagina” is used among people who think they are being so modern!! (Have I had this rant here before?) Might as well use “esophagus”for “mouth.” Ugh, ugh, ugh! I don’t know about you, but I have NEVER had occasion to us the term “vagina” around my kids or my parents or anyone else, not even a doctor. But oh, my poor children, they are starting life with a huge disadvantage. Wonder if they will ever graduate high school?

        Coincidentally, today my 3yo and I were in a small room with a man we don’t know, and she commented out of the blue, “my pee-pee hurts.” Imagine the discomfort in the room, had she used “anatomically correct terms” or, worse, the term “progressive” moms supposedly teach their kids. Yuck.

  2. Sue says:

    Yeah, I kinda agree with you Laura. It’s for a good cause, but it’s not really necessary in school to wear a bracelet that says boobies. If you want to support breast cancer causes then just wear pink b/c we all know what it stands for. I have to say, I love the “feel your balls” slogan!!! If that doesn’t make you LOL nothing will 😉

  3. SKL says:

    There is only one reason kids want to wear those bracelets in school: because they want to rock the boat and see what the teachers do about it. It’s disruptive and disrespectful. And that’s not what schools are for.

    If they truly wanted to promote breast health (yeah right), why not say “I care about breast health” or “I support breast cancer research”? I’ve never heard a doctor or medical journal (or any adult) refer to “booby cancer.”

    And also, if these kids are so health-minded, I’m sure they are even more demonstrative about lung cancer and other smoking-related diseases, considering that they spend every day in the middle of a population that smokes. So what do their lung cancer bracelets say? Oh my, I just thought of a couple slogans that are too bad to write (plus I don’t want to give any students any bright ideas!).

    As far as the pink – I’m on the fence there. On one hand, I won’t support a charity that spends money on all kinds of bells and whistles, walks and runs, etc. If the cause fits my giving priorities, I’ll send a check and then I want to get on with my business. But I can also see why it’s a good idea to push awareness when it comes to something easily preventable / curable if found early. So if people want to wear the pink, more power to them, but I won’t be paying a premium just to wear around a symbol of “how much I care.” I frankly think that giving should be done privately (or “in secret” as the Bible says), but I have been known to do the March of Dimes walk in the past, so who am I to judge?

  4. mssc54 says:

    I much prefer the slogan “SAVE SECOND BASE!”

    And on a more serious note, anything that interferes with teaching time in the classroom IS disruptive. Period.

  5. Nikki says:

    I understand and appreciate the point behind it. However the words they choose are inappropriate for school aged kids, and most definitely not appropriate to wear in school. I wouldn’t allow my son to wear it, not that he would wear a bracelet that said that! That’s all the time I have to write a comment! But I pretty much agree with Laura, great idea, and thought behind it but not for all ages! 🙂

  6. starlaschat says:

    For adults it’s fine but for kids in school,probably not a good idea. They really shouldn’t be thinking about if they love Boobies or not.

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