Dear mothers, aunts, sisters, grandmothers, community leaders and friends,
I hope this finds you well.
I'm reaching out to apprise you of a very unsettling physical change to a beloved strong female lead Disney character Merida, the curly red-headed, strong-willed, independent and lead animated princess of the box office super hit animated movie Brave.
Recently news of Disney's plans to reduce her waist line, apply makeup to her face, and give her a "princess dress" has millions of young girls and their parents up in arms.
As a social advocate, member of the Healthy Media Commission and as a Mother of an 11-year-old girl, I feel it's my duty to bring this to your attention for one reason: millions of young girls have associated and bonded with this Disney character's free spirit, out of the box and non conforming attitude the princess world so rarely ever sees. To change Merida's physical characteristics would imply she was not good enough as is! Our children do not need another strong female character whittled down physically -- and socially -- to be deemed acceptable!
Why can't a child have a hero that doesn't follow the typical ideal of beauty or classic princess accoutrement as applied to most other fairy tales outside of Shrek's Princess Fiona?
I look forward to combining our voices and encouraging Disney to rethink their decision and to see the impact these seemingly insignificant strokes of photoshop or artistic "enhancements" affect our daughters' body images and self-esteem.
Lastly, I emphatically encourage all advertisers reading this to present their concerns directly to Disney as this is the only way this change will ever grab hold.