The Instigator
a92meyer
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
WillMurray
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

Child Beauty Pageants

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/18/2011 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 7,270 times Debate No: 15457
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (0)

 

a92meyer

Con

Child beauty pageants are harmful to young girls; it puts a damper on their esteem and makes them feel pressured to compete and be the best. Some mothers subject their daughters to these pageants as a way for them to live vicariously through their child. Because the competition is so high, mothers tend to put enormous amounts of pressure on their children. If little girl loses she feels as if shes is not pretty enough and not good enough. According to Michele Berg, who wrote the article "Child Beauty Pageants: Read the Warning Label", possible effects for young girls who participate in these pageants include the development of eating disorders, depression, and and even cutting. Child beauty pageants are not as glamorous as they seem to be on television; they can cause young girls to develop serious illnesses because they feel the need to be better and mainly want to please their parents.
WillMurray

Pro

Hello there, seems like a fun debate.
First I am a bit confused of what you are actually arguing. The core of your argument seems to be that beauty pagents are bad, but are you saying that being in a beauty pageant is not a positive experience for a young girl as a whole, are you saying that beauty pageants should be not allowed, are arguing that beauty pageants cause those effects you listed, or are arguing that Michele Berg article is an accurate depiction of beauty pageant risks.
If you could clarify what more specifically you want to argue about in the next round I would appreciate it, it seems really far to broad otherwise.
Addressing some of your points though. I do not think is entirely fair to blame the beauty pageant for many of the symptoms that appear in its participants. Beauty pageants draw a certain kinds of families and parents, and I think this kind of high pressure parent is the true cause of the stress and the issues, not the competition in of itself. Just because it many of the listed issues appear often around these events does not mean there is a causal relationship. As the overly used phrase goes, correlation does not prove causation. Many similar effects can be seen in kids that are pushed by their parents athletically, theatrically or academically.
Also I found your comment about beauty pageants appearing glamorous on TV a little unfair, as pretty much anytime beauty pageants are mentioned in the media or TV shows they are given immensely negative coverage and do not appear at all glamorous.
It is important not to scapegoat things like beauty pageants when we are looking at issues in todays youth.
Debate Round No. 1
a92meyer

Con

I apologize for my argument being unclear, and thank you for accepting my debate. I am not saying that I think child beauty pageants should be banned. I am saying that the overall effect of child beauty pageants does not benefit the child. Some people may believe that these pageants help boost a young girl's self esteem; however it does the complete opposite. Young girls must deal with the burden of pressure which mostly comes from their parents. They feel as if it is their only job to perform well and if they don't they think of themselves as failures because of all the pressure that is put on them. They are pressured to both act and look a certain way. Some children are overcome with frustration if they lose the pageant which can very well effect the child's mind and body. Children develop eating disorders, such as bulimia and anorexia, and suffer from depression because they consider themselves failures. They believe that if they do not look like the ideal image of a Barbie doll, and act like a beauty queen should act, then they are a failure. This lowers the child's self esteem and can often cause health and psychological problems.
WillMurray

Pro

WillMurray forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
a92meyer

Con

Competing in beauty pageants can lead to the desperation of the contestants to win. This can lead to unsportsman-like conduct and cheating. Many mothers also cheat so that their precious little daughter will win the pageant. This is not teaching the child to play fair--it is teaching them that it is okay to do anything you need to do to win even if it involves cheating. Losing pageants can cause children to have major insecurities. They may not see themselves as good enough and sometimes girls lose respect for themselves because of their failure. The overall effect of child beauty pageants has children thinking they are worthless failures just because they don't reach parent's and judges' standards of perfection.
WillMurray

Pro

Sorry again for missing my last round, I will address your newest round first and then move back.
Contention 1- "Competing in beauty pageants can lead to the desperation of the contestants to win. This can lead to unsportsman-like conduct and cheating."
By this same logic, school, any sport, or any sort of competition is a negative thing. Just because there is a potential for cheating does not meant the expiernce is a negative one. This is like saying the way to teach a child never to steal is by never allowing them in a store. Of course cheating is wrong but that does not meant any situation or event that has the potential for cheating is.
Contention 2 "Losing pageants can cause children to have major insecurities"
Again losing in anything can cause a child insecurities. Life is a series of trial, and tests. We are constantly competing for grades, for jobs. Yes losing can hurt a child self esteem but does this mean we should shy away from any competition. Surely not it just means parents must be careful how they frame competition and defeat. If a child loses respect for themselves because of failures at a beauty pageant, I hardly see how one can blame the existence of the pageant for these negative effects and not the parents. One cannot blame the Irrational behavior of a parent of the existence of the competition.
Alright moving back to the round I missed.
Contention 3 "Pageants do not boost self esteem"
First i think it is important to make the point that while your description of the mental process of the participants might be accurate for one girl that does not mean it is true for all girls. You are speaking in a way that implies that all girls feel this way, but first off there is no evidence of this, and people participate in these events such as these for a huge variety of reasons. To try and simplify the thought process of every girl who participates into your above statement is completely unfair. You show how pageants might take self esteem away from some girls, but you failed to recognize how it could add self esteem to others. The very fact that they are competing in contest judging beauty is boost all of itself. Just because you are not the fastest runner on a cross country team does not mean you could not demolish the average student in a race.
Contention 3.5 "The lack of self esteem makes them turn to eating disorders, and suffer from depression"
While this may be true for some this again just comes back to the idea that any time there is a competition there are always those parents and even kids who desperately want to win. They put such a high value in victory that they are unable to deal appropriately with loss. Some in sports might turn to steroids, in intense schools situations other might turn to aderol or other performance boosting drugs. The fact that these children have lowered self esteem is not to be blamed on the pageant but instead on the parents and maybe even the child personality as a whole.
Conclusion
I apologize if I have misrepresented any of your points, I am trying to use more organizationally strategies in my arguments, and this sometimes lends itself to strawmen. I have not made many points myself mainly countered yours as I believe the burden of proof lies on you to show that beauty pageants are negative for children. The main point of my argument is that pageants are just another competition and it is important to cut through the negative stereotypes surrounding these pageants and see that despite how you might feel about them personally, the pageants are not the cause of the problem.
Fun debate, again sorry for missing a round
Debate Round No. 3
a92meyer

Con

I understand the point you are trying to get across when you say, "By this same logic, school, any sport, or any sort of competition is a negative thing." However, I do not believe that competing in beauty pageants and competing in sports is nearly the same thing. Sports help keep a child fit and healthy. Any yes, there is competition involved in sports and there are also parents pushing their children to be the best; however, with beauty pageants, parents are teaching their young children that physical appearance is most important. Young girls who participate in these pageants get spray tans, and wear fake teeth, fake eyelashes, and even fake hair. They wear airbrushed makeup and expensive dresses. Parents are teaching their young girls that it is okay to mask your natural look and trade it in for something fake in order to win the competition.
"One cannot blame the Irrational behavior of a parent of the existence of the competition." While it seems like I am mostly attacking the parents and saying that they are at fault, it also the judges and the competition that are at fault. These judges deduct points if the child falters even the slightest bit. They do not accept anything less than perfection, thus forcing children to work that much harder at changing their image. These pageants do not teach young children healthy competition; they teach them that physical appearance is what matters most. It constantly stresses the importance of winning and looking your best. In my opinion these pageants promote fake beauty. Whereas in sports children are not covering up their natural image.
"Just because there is a potential for cheating does not meant the expiernce is a negative one." You have a point when you say that cheating can occur in sports just like it can occur in pageants; however, beauty pageants are not a healthy form of competition. In both sports and beauty pageants, parents push their children to win and succeed. In beauty pageants children are being taught that it is acceptable to put on a fake image in order to win, whereas in sports children are being taught that physical abilities are more important. Young girls are being taught that beauty will get them places, which is not always true.
WillMurray

Pro

WillMurray forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
a92meyer

Con

As i have stated, child beauty pageants are similar to sports in that they both have competition. However, sports are not teaching children to cover up their identities in order to win, whereas in these pageants young girls are being taught that it is okay to mask themselves with makeup and expensive outfits in order to win. These pageants teach young girls that beauty is what is most important. It is teaching them that one must be beautiful and perfect in order to win. "Yes losing can hurt a child self esteem but does this mean we should shy away from any competition." This statement is general in that you are saying all competition is bad. Maybe you have misinterpreted this part of my argument, but I am not saying that competition should be avoided, or that competition is not healthy; I am saying that the competition involved in child beauty pageants is not the type of healthy competition displayed in sports.
WillMurray

Pro

WillMurray forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by a92meyer 3 years ago
a92meyer
no, don't worry about it, i still want you to post a rebuttal for the last round
Posted by WillMurray 3 years ago
WillMurray
God i am bad at this well i assume this means i lose the debate on just conduct oh well up to you if you want me to post a last round but that seems unfair on my part
Posted by a92meyer 3 years ago
a92meyer
don't worry about it! it's fine :)
Posted by WillMurray 3 years ago
WillMurray
Oops really sorry was working on a paper and forgot to post
welp if you wanna continue the debate we still gotta a couple rounds my bad though
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