In a recent episode of family guy I watched, Peter gives Stewie, a baby, steroids because Stewie was beaten up by a baby girl at a birthday party. Peter goes on to say that the baby girl must be a lesbian because her hair was short and she had stubby legs.
This episode was meant to be funny, however, it clearly depicts the gender differences and gender stereotypes in America. First of all, the stereotype that men and boys are supposed to be strong and tough and women and girls are supposed to be fragile and weak is prevalent in this episode and in America. Peter is so distraught that Stewie, a boy, is beaten up by a girl, that he goes to the length of shooting his own baby up with steroids. Peter hopes that once Stewie is ripped from the steroids, that he will be able to reclaim his masculinity and not be a so-called “wuss” or “girly-man.” In reality, however, it is perfectly normal for a baby boy to get roughed up by a baby girl and not lose his masculinity, partly due to the fact that at such a young age there is no distinct masculine features shown by any babies. Another stereotype that shows up is that all lesbians have short, stubby statures and that they all have short, “butch” haircuts. Yes, it is true that some lesbians may have the features Peter portrays lesbians to have. However, not even close to all lesbians have these features, in fact, not even close to the majority of lesbians have these features. Peter and other Americans who encourage these stereotypes act to incorrectly label certain kinds of people in an attempt to limit the ways the people are supposed to look and act. Ultimately, sexual orientation is a personal preference, not a distinct look or set of actions.
Below is a clip from the Stew-Roids Family Guy episode.