‘Like A Girl’ and putting it to rest

‘Like A Girl’ and putting it to rest

As children we learn that curse words will earn us a world-class spanking. We hope that our children grow up as smart individuals who refuse to express themselves through offensive language such as profanities. What many people fail to realize is that there are things that we say that can be just as offensive as the use of profanities.

Words are used to create powerful speeches, beautiful songs by our favorite artists, for award winning reading material but are also used to tear our peers down all too often. With the emergence of popular social media sites, the amount of people insulting others over the Internet has increased greatly.

Cyber bullying has become the most popular way for young people, and adults alike, to insult one another, which is unacceptable. But not all negative words are curse words; some are just used in an insulting way even though we may not realize it.

During this years Super Bowl a commercial aired by the brand Always showing young girls performing specific movements such as running and throwing. They ask young boys to run and throw like a girl; they then proceeded to flail their arms around as they clumsily jog in place.

Then they ask young girls to show them the same movement, their enactment is slightly different. It lacked the clumsiness that the boy’s movement possessed. The commercial was intended to boost self-esteem in young girls and young female teens alike by asking its viewers to cease use of “like a girl” as an insult.

An individual’s self-esteem begins to disintegrate going into their teens, especially in young women according to the American Psychological Association. The expression, “throw like a girl” or, “run like a girl”, or anything, “like a girl” is something that needs to be put to rest.

Classifying anything as, “like a girl” is suggesting that a girl cannot do that task to the same caliber that a boy can. Most often it is used to tease a friend, but the mere fact that it is used, as a joke to tease a friend is enough to show us how demeaning the expression really is. Simply saying that a girl does something so differently to the extreme that is intended to be humorous suggests that a boy does the exact same movement not only differently, but also better.

No two movements are ever identical. Even if the same person repeats the movement over and over again, it is impossible to replicate the action exactly as it was performed the first time.

Therefore, who is to say that a boy who throws, “like a boy” performs the action the same as his male acquaintance? Does that mean that one of those boys perhaps doesn’t perform the movement to their definition of, “like a boy”? Anyways, who’s to say a girl can’t excel in a male dominated sport?

This past year the Little League World Series introduced a young woman with a very unique talent.

Mo’ne Davis is a thirteen-year-old eighth grader who just so happens to be the star pitcher for Philadelphia’s Tanney Dragons in last years Little League World Series. You’re probably thinking; a girl played in the Little League World Series? Yes, you did read that correctly, a teenage girl not only played in the series, but she also raised to stardom from her performance all series long. It’s hard to believe that someone who throws like a girl could excel at a male dominated sport, but she defied the odds and showed us all exactly what it means to, “throw like a girl”.

Not only did this young woman capture the heart of sports enthusiasts nationwide, but she also rose to the fame of a national celebrity over the course of a couple of weeks. Unfortunately the Tanney Dragons were defeated in the tournament, but Mo’ne Davis ending up winning something even greater.

Davis landed a photo of herself pitching, “like a girl” on the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine, the most famous of all sporting magazines. Yes, you read that right, the first Little Leaguer to grace the cover of the magazine is also the first girl to pitch for a team in the series. Davis is picture pitching, in baseball over hand pitching is the only way to play. Davis showed us that you can pitch like a girl and still be competitive in a male dominated sport. She has pushed the boundaries of what girls are seen as capable of doing by dominating a sport that girls rarely have the privilege of participating in.

Every time someone uses, “like a girl” as an insult, women as a gender are put down and seen as the lesser of the two sexes.

Women are every bit as capable as men are, but they are immediately shot down every time that insult is used. This is only the beginning for young girls and women.

If a girl can prove she is every bit as good as her male counterparts in a sport dominated by boys, who knows what is in store for girls in the future. We just might see a woman running our country in the next presidential election. The possibilities are endless.