A couple of weeks ago I was driving and listening to the radio. I had just changed the radio station when a catchy beat caused me to pause my surfing. And that’s when I heard it. The lyrics that literally made me laugh out loud.
Yeah, it’s pretty clear, I ain’t no size two
But I can shake it, shake it
Like I’m supposed to do
‘Cause I got that boom boom that all the boys chase
And all the right junk in all the right places
I kept listening…
I see the magazine workin’ that Photoshop
We know that shit ain’t real
C’mon now, make it stop
If you got beauty building, just raise ’em up
‘Cause every inch of you is perfect
From the bottom to the top
I was digging this message! This girl was sharing an important message- you don’t have to be perfect, don’t be fooled by photoshop, and your body is awesome just as it is.
But then I heard the song again from the beginning and realized that other elements of the song are pretty problematic from a feminist and body image perspective. Let me be clear- I like the message that promotes body positivity for curvier women. BUT I don’t like it when it comes at the cost of shaming other kinds of bodies. And I don’t like the idea that there is a “right” way to look. Or that looking “right” is what draws the boys in (since, ya know, that’s all we girls care about anyway)! It’s messages like these that leads to women shaming other women. I don’t want to think mean thoughts about another girl because of what she looks like PERIOD- tall, short, skinny, curvy, black, white, you name it.
Check out these lyrics and think about what I’m saying…
I’m bringing booty back
Go ahead and tell them skinny bitches that
No I’m just playing. I know you think you’re fat
But I’m here to tell ya
Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top
Yeah my mama she told me don’t worry about your size
She says, “Boys like a little more booty to hold at night.”
You know I won’t be no stick figure silicone Barbie doll
So if that’s what you’re into then go ahead and move along
I think it’s important to remember that physical beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. But even more importantly, our bodies do lots of things besides attracting a partner. I think I’m still waiting for THAT song to come along.