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article imageOp-Ed: Tabloids target 3-year-old Shiloh Jolie-Pitt

By KJ Mullins     Mar 5, 2010 in Entertainment
When you are a famous parent it seems the gossip rags think your children are open targets to attack. The latest kid with a target on their shirt is Shiloh Jolie-Pitt.
Shiloh, 3, likes to wear boy clothes. Her parents let her get a short haircut. In the eyes of a tabloid, this means they're rearing their toddler to become a bi-sexual.
If you were to look back at pictures of myself at the same age you would see a little girl with a pixie cut. No one thought that I was going to "bat for the other team" because my hair was short. (The reason for the short hairdo for me was a wad of chewing gum that did not respond to peanut butter or ice and a mother who couldn't bear to hear the pain of her child to save long hair.)
In Shiloh's case, critics are looking at mom Angelina Jolie's bisexuality and going wild. They have "experts" saying the short hair is because she is raising her child to become bisexual. Gasp! The horrors.
The cute little haircut must mean that Brad been "whipped" by his partner and is allowing their child's sexual identity to be confused.
"Little girls have never been women before," Glenn Stanton, director of Family Formation Studies at the conservative organization Focus on the Family, tells Life & Style. "They need help, they need guidance of what that looks like. It's important to teach our children that gender distinction is very healthy."
So are the gossip rags spouting the real truth or is it just a slow month for trash fodder?
At least E! Online is fighting back a bit. Their child development expert Betsy Brown Braun says that "Children experiment with all kinds of clothing and behavior as they figure out who they are and who they want to be," she tells me. "It has nothing to do with sexuality; it has everything to do with relationships and the people with whom the child is identifying."
Do you think the clothing choices of a toddler should be the makings of magazine articles? Does gender identity at this age mean that little boys wear blue and little girls wear frilly pink?
Parents who have survived the toddler years know kids wear a variety of scary things when they are allowed to pick their own wardrobe. It has nothing to do with what the future will hold.
Instead, it says something about the parents who allow their kids to be themselves; it says they love their kids enough to let them be themselves. Bravo Pitt and Jolie for being real parents.
As for the gossip rags, get a life and quit picking on the kids.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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