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The Kind Campaign

http://www.kindcampaign.com/

The majority of what I’ve written so far has been about how women are negatively represented in the media, probably because these are the things that stand out to me the most.  However, the other day I was reading about a movement called the Kind Campaign.  The founders, Lauren Parsekian and Molly Thompson, started out by making a documentary addressing the issue of female bullying.  Eventually, their ideas went on to creating a movement that has addressed these issues at school assemblies across the country.  Unlike the other things I’ve written about, I felt that this was a positive force for girls in the media that helps to combat some of the problems they face each day.

According to their website, “Over the years, the vicious ways in which females treat each other have become societal norms, with various media outlets that mock and even glamorize the issue. What we often choose to ignore is the fact that these experiences very often lead to depression, anxiety, loss of self worth, eating disorders, drug abuse, alcoholism, attempted suicide and actual suicide in millions of girls lives.”

I thought that this program relates to our class because the way girls treat other girls is an important place to start in addressing the way women are seen within society.  We often spend our time targeting the way men view women and how this has led to inequality.  Even if these views originated from men, these ideas are so prevalent that women have internalized them and begin to perpetuate these ideas themselves.  When women are calling other women names and viewing them negatively, it only becomes that much easier for men to continue doing the same.

The Kind Campaign works with school-age girls, which I think is important so that problems among girls can be addressed at the time as well as hopefully be prevented from happening in the future.  Although I do feel like a lot of the bullying between girls that I’ve seen was in middle school and high school, I still see it happening today.  All too often I hear my friends calling other girls names or making judgments about girls that they don’t even know.  They may think it’s justified, but really they’re just making it easier for someone to turn around and call them that same thing, because those types of views begin to be normalized.  And these are the same names that if they were themselves called these things, they would be offended and hurt.  One step towards gaining equality for women is for women to have respect for themselves as well as other women.


2 Comments

  1. pammiano says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this information. As the mom of two teenage girls I am alternatively horrified and saddened by how girls treat each other. Especially now, with the technology available, all kids – not just girls – can not only devastate each other with a couple of clicks on a phone or computer, they can share it with hundreds of others within seconds (e.g. Steubenville).

    It is an uphill battle to coach them to not resort to name calling and judgments since they continually face the same behavior from others. I tell them that women are their own worst enemy and it’s true. The sad part is that we women do not seem to grow out of dissing one another. So much time and energy directed at the wrong target. I firmly believe in the saying – for any cause or idea, but the women’s movement in particular – “change begins with me” – hard to live by, harder to teach to teenagers, but still worth consideration.

    I forwarded this info onto the principal of our high school with the hope she will consider screening the film or taking part in the campaign and will also be sharing the information with my girls.

  2. Favi Bogen says:

    I have never heard of this campaign but I am glad it has been created as it is greatly needed with bullying being a huge problem. I also agree that change has to start with us. Yes, it is easier to resort to name calling and treating others (especially women) how they treat us but we have to make an effort to be the better person and be the change.

    Teaching young women (and others) early on how to treat our peers is important. Unfortunately, this starts at home. I think parents (and us) could learn a couple of techniques to teach their children on how to handle situations better. Granted, you will always have those individuals whose parents are not as involved with their children who may be considered the “problem children.” Again, change starts with us. If we learn to approach things differently, maybe we can inspire others to do the same. It’s hard to fight or argue when you don’t have any willing participants.

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