Minnie and Daisy send the wrong message
Published: Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 5, 2012 23:09
Barneys New York, one of the most expensive, high-fashion department stores, has partnered up with Disney to create its 2012 “Electric Holiday” winter campaign. Through this partnership, they have destroyed some of our most beloved Disney characters by transforming them into what is the “ideal" body shape and distorting the images of our childhood.
Daisy Duck, who is dressed head to toe in a sexy Dolce and Gabbana number, no longer has the body of a duck, but one of a human woman who’s sultry and weighs less than what her BMI is supposed to be. She lacks even Barbie’s curves. She and Minnie Mouse, who is dressed in Lanvin, have been reduced to nothing.
This terrifying transformation shows the world what we, as a society, are all about: unhealthy weights and an obsessive desire to have the perfect body. It appears that now even Disney is telling us to go in the direction of “perfection.”
Even though this might have been an innocent gimmick to receive more profit on designer clothing during the approaching holiday season, this whole concept will hit the youth of our nation hard.
Innocent young girls are already bombarded by the message that “thin is in.” They are already getting this message from fashion magazines and entertainment television such as America’s Next Top Model. By taking these beloved characters from our childhoods and slimming them down an obscene amount, marketers are reaching children even younger than before and embedding the message that everyone is stick-thin. These characters should serve as role models and should accept youth for who they are regardless of body shape. Instead, Disney and Barneys will be giving children the gift that keeps on giving – low self-esteem and a negative body image.
Disney and Barneys should scrap this idea entirely. They should bring Daisy Duck and Minnie Mouse back to their original figures and put them in the clothing that talented designers could have created for their unique bodies. Wouldn’t we all rather see these characters the way they are, just as we see ourselves when we look in the mirror?
If the fashion world let Daisy and Minnie be themselves, it would be a bigger statement. It would not only be about the gorgeous clothing, which the famous cartoons are presenting to the public, but it would send the message to everyone who is young and young at heart that being any size is wonderful. It would be one of the very first messages that would break through to people that being stick-thin is not the only way to be beautiful and desirable. If Minnie was short and stout with a bow to match with her Lanvin gown, it give the message “Never change for anyone,” a much better message than the one which Disney and Barneys are sending with their current cartoons.
If Disney and Barneys united to start a new chapter in a new world, it would be more controversial to turn their backs away from what was considered to be typical beauty. They could let the words of the campaign be “Clothing to look good on any size, even a short mouse.” I believe that is more chic than the usual skin and bones girl that can be seen in any fashion magazine. I don’t think being yourself could ever go out of style.
The fashion world and our childhood should have the ability to collaborate. But mixing it together and distorting our memories of what was beautiful and fun into an emaciated figure that depicts what people are expected to look like is not acceptable. I believe this can only bring our society down. It will only make the youth of our nation lose self esteem. We should embrace our figure, whether we are a size 12 or a size two. We should love who we are on the outside as much as we love ourselves on the inside.
Georgie Flynn is a junior English and print journalism major and can be reached at email@example.com.