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The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Ban Bossy campaign inspires young girls to lead proudly

“I’m not bossy,” says Beyoncé in a bold, powerful video. “I’m the boss.”

The Ban Bossy campaign, created by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg in conjunction with the Girl Scouts, points out the double standard in assertiveness between young boys and girls. While the boys are seen as confident and encouraged to continue, girls are put down for being “bossy.”

The campaign is trying to do what society should already be doing — teaching its children. We should empower young girls to reach for their ambitions without fear of being insulted and pushed down.

If everything is right in the world, Ban Bossy will be just the beginning.

“When I was growing up, I was called bossy,” said Sandberg in a video released by the campaign.

“Being labeled something matters. By middle school, girls are less interested in leadership than boys. And that’s because they worry about being called bossy,” said Jennifer Garner, Beyoncé and Jane Lynch, respectively, in the same video.

Girls who grow up hearing the word “bossy” will grow up believing that their voice is a violation against someone else, and they will learn to stop using it.

“Bossy is one of the most obvious double standards out there between girls and boys because even from a young age, girls are called bossy and boys aren’t,” said Early College senior Jordan Smith. “It’s like an introduction for young girls on what’s to come for the rest of their lives.”

Girls should never, ever be told that they cannot lead. Telling a little girl she’s bossy is a short hop from telling a woman to stay in her place.

“Here’s where I will start to doubt myself,” said a little girl in the campaign’s other video. “Here’s where I will start being interrupted. Here’s where I will stop raising my hand. Here’s where my voice will get drowned out. Here’s where I was called stubborn, pushy, know-it-all, aggressive, bossy.”

Even with its incredible marketing, Ban Bossy is receiving a lot of critical feedback. Critics seem to be incapable of understanding that girls grow into women, and childhoods shape adults.

Talk radio and TV host Pat Gray wrote an article for The Blaze bashing the campaign.

“Whatever, I’m 100 percent committed to banning words, as you should be,” wrote Gray. “We should ban the word ‘pain’ so that we won’t feel any, any longer … and if we ban the word ‘disease,’ how much longer will we all live? The possibilities are endless.”

No, banning bossy probably won’t achieve gender equality in one easy step, but it will raise a few more female leaders that aren’t afraid to speak up.

That’s powerful. That’s important.

Even if it doesn’t change the hearts and minds of the public, shouldn’t it be worth it to change the lives of some little girls?

Societal influence starts at a young age, and that’s where it should first be corrected. It’s hard to unlearn years of prejudice and aggression, and that’s what we’re inflicting on our young girls.

Let’s encourage young girls to speak up. Let’s raise a lot more bosses.

Let’s ban “bossy.”

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    txgyrlApr 11, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    Sorry….”the Boss” is already taken by Bruce Springsteen…..