Chris Minnesota

Gender Equality for Children

Children are exposed to a lot of gender stereotyped media, and it negatively influences their views on gender.

Dear next president,

I have always supported people that are transgender and/or LGBT. However, personally I have never felt that connected to gender. I am a male and I know that, but I’ve never really felt like being male is a large part of who I am. I have seen studies that say that the male and female brains are very different, but with all the other things that divide us, gender doesn't seem very important. Recently though, I have starting thinking about this more in depth, and I realize that gender does have a very large impact on me.

There are things I would never do because I see them as feminine. More than that though, it impacts my views of other people. When I see males doing feminine things, I find those situations weird and uncomfortable. And I believe that this affects more than just me. I believe this is where the hatred of transgender and LGBT people comes from. Seeing a male being a female, or being romantically involved with other men, which is associated with females, makes people uncomfortable because of their pre determined ideas of what each gender is supposed to do. So I started looking to see where these ideas come from. In my search I found a video of a speech by Christopher Bell, and that video helped me see that these opinions are formed via the media, and are formed most strongly in childhood.

In such a media centered environment, the media affects our opinions more than anything else, including our opinions on gender. And these gender stereotypes are extremely prominent in things for children. Weather it be toys, Tv, or movies. Females are shown mostly as the people who fall in love, princess that feel they need a prince for their life to be complete. They are given toys that teach them how to cook and make clothes. Whereas males are shown as superheroes and given cars to play with. They are encouraged to be heroes, lives of action and adventure. These things create the ideal traits of a gender, and allow us to learn that some things are for males, and some are for females, with little overlap.

It is for these reasons I encourage you, as the president of the united states, to call for major companies to work to remove this segregation of the genders, and bridge the gap between the tasks and hobbies that each gender is shown having. This will allow children to be more open minded, and pursue what they want, instead of what they think they should. This will benefit not only the children, but the country itself by removing the arguments over the problems that involve gender.

I am not saying that children should not have a sense of gender, nor am I saying that differences in gender don't exist. However, with all the things that divide us and tell us what to think, our own gender should not be one of them. We need to teach people to not stereotype or think less of someone, and the easiest time to do that is when they are children, and the easiest way to do it is through the media. The fact that companies have not realized this sooner I believe is quite sad, which is why I am asking you to inform them, and make them change their ways before it becomes a bigger problem than it already is.


Age 15

Henry Sibley High School