Ask my son what he wants for a treat and he will emphatically respond with “ICE CREAM PINK!”
It’s not just the ice cream Charlie loves, he is nearly 3 and his favorite color is pink.
Short answer: we’re not. We are not going to stress about color choices our boys make. Because, frankly, the color of their shirt, shorts, shoes, or ice cream has no bearing as to whether or not our sons will grow up to be good people.
Why is it such a big deal to some, this color coded gender bias we have placed upon the children we are raising?
Gender neutral clothing started to disappear in the 80s to be replaced by color coded gender teams of pink and blue. Walk in to any kid’s clothing store and the color bias assaults you from either side. Some parents rail against the princess model by banning their girls from wearing pink, while others would mock boys like my son for being sissies.
Roll the clock even further back to 1918 and you’ll see that pink was a tough color. “The generally accepted rule is pink for the boys, and blue for the girls. The reason is that pink, being a more decided and stronger color, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl.” [via Smithsonian Mag]
While the month of October gets pinkwashed in the name of breast cancer support, it has another effect: reducing the stigma of the color (to which I am still perplexed as to why a stigma exists in the first place).
We have come so far, our generation, yet we still have so much to learn. We are the sons and daughters of the mothers who rose up for equal rights between the genders. Yet we are the ones pigeon-holing our kids with the clothes they wear.
Pink ain’t nothing but a color.
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