Over on Slate, Emily Yoffe wrote a piece about trying to find appropriate clothing for her 11-year-old daughter. She went to teen-friendly store Limited Too and found padded bras, T-shirts with phrases like "I left my brain in my locker," and underwear with the slogan, "Buy It Now, Tell Dad Later!" Abercrombie and Macy's were similar minefields, and the writer made a point of avoiding Victoria's Secret: "their clothing was emblazoned with the words 'University of Pink.' (I don't want to know that school's most popular major.)" Now, there's a round up of the Slate message boards following the story.
The dialogue is mostly from moms who identify with Yoffe's plaint, saying that these days, young girls look like "tramps in training." But other posters suggest that the moms need to relax. Says one poster, "For what it's worth, I am anecdotal evidence that these shopping choices do not lead to tweenhood delinquency, promiscuity, and death."
It's a tough call. We don't have kids, but we did go to school in the 80s — in miniskirts so short we joked that they were belts; leopard print dresses that were actually vintage slips, and, uh, spandex shorts. And we turned out okay! (It helped that we were shopping with a Mom who'd worn many a micro-mini in her day.) Then again, kiddie thongs and Baby Phat duds hadn't been invented yet. Still, the other day we saw a saucy, lollipop-sucking teenager in a tiny skirt and a skin-tight red "You Know You Wish You Could Date Me" T-shirt, and we thought to ourselves, Hell yeah! Wear that crap now, while you can.