This “Mom” AND TLC are gettin’ some bad press (again). The horrible child exploitation show, Toddlers and Tiaras, is back in the news and this time another Mom is under fire…and she may lose custody of her 4-year-old!
TLC’s horrifying child exploitation show, “Toddlers & Tiaras,” was shoved back on our radar — if not our TVs — again when a judge banned 4-year-old Maddy Verst from participating in beauty pageants, and a court-appointed shrink recommended that primary custody should be awarded to the child’s father, Bill Verst.
Maddy, you might remember, is the child The Post reported on last year when her mother, Lindsay Jackson, strapped fake boobs and a big butt on her and sent her out onstage — via “Toddlers & Tiaras” — dressed like Dolly Parton for a bogus-looking pageant filmed by TLC.
Custody? These people shouldn’t have procreated in the first place!
The ruling has sparked a national debate. Yesterday, George Stephanopoulos asked legal analyst Dan Abrams on “GMA” whether the court even has the right to assign primary custody based on parent-mandated activities — even if, as mother Jackson alleges, the child’s father has a criminal record? (The Post could find no criminal record.)
Abrams was more alarmed, and perhaps rightly so, about the legal implications of court interference in this case.
But when is the court supposed to step in to stop child exploitation — especially when it’s witnessed by the whole world on TV?
Suppose parents strapped a giant pe*@s on a boy and had him parade on TV in briefs claiming he was dressed as David Beckham?
Can you imagine the outrage? Of course not, because it wouldn’t happen. The sexualization of little boys is considered wrong but sexualizing little girls in these bogus pageants? No problem.
What? You think those pageants are the real deal? Real for whom? Have you seen the judges? They look like they escaped from Cirque du Soleil!
And worse, look at the half-filled conference rooms where these things take place. Those folding chairs strain under the weight of obese stage mothers who’ve spent thousands to participate in these grifter fests.
Remember the first time baby beauty pageants were thrust into our consciousness with the murder of JonBenet Ramsey in 1996? JonBenet looks angelic compared to how parents dress their pageant girls now.
I blame this step over the bounds of childhood decency on reality TV. It pushes the limits and forces the untalented slobs among us to act as badly as untamed house pets for our amusement.
TLC particularly delights in showing bad parenting. Now we’ve got the “Toddlers” spinoff “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” in our faces. It stars Alana, the suddenly famous child-pageant contestant whose morbidly obese mother, June, looks like something out of “Monty Python”and sounds like she quit school in day care. And there’s Bella, also from “Toddlers,” a pageant kid so bratty she should be classified as feral as she goes around biting everything in her path.
It’s like the Post said,
“These girls look like sex slaves at auction to the highest bidder — and that bidder is TLC.”
What do you think? Is there a line we’ve crossed as a reality show lovin’, media whorin’ society that laughs at shows about others’ personal lives. Have we become too numb?
Images via Youtube