Even with all the new devices competing for kids' attention, regular old TV still dominates kids' screen time. That means all the characters they watch or otherwise absorb through popular culture make a big impact on kids' still-forming identities.
Here's the story of how over two weeks, a "nobody" went from 10 to 100 to 10,000 followers on Instagram, having two fan pages, and a social media stalker. And I'm not proud to admit that the story is about my nine-year-old daughter.
Do we care more when a male is the subject of exploitation? For example, viewers have been particularly outraged that Lil Poopy's shirt is lifted up by an older woman who grinds up against him while dancing. But this type of thing happens all the time with young female performers.
I can only hope that Abby Lee Miller's oft said phrase, "Everyone's replaceable," applies quickly to her. Viewers have been tricked for too long into believing that watching kids getting eaten alive is a treat.
Those who believe their parenting skills are worthy of an audience have many chances to be seen in the near future. Apparently reality show producers also think the whole world needs to weigh in on different ways to raise children, based on the sample of casting calls made recently.
Whether you're struggling to get your foot in the door, your feet on the floor, or to keep your spot on top, Bunheads and Breaking Pointe will give you a look at what lies beyond the ballet slippers and leotards.
Despite their extreme antics at this point, it's a total cliché to criticize 'Dance Moms' moms. The people who really should make us scratch our heads are the other adults involved: the teachers and coaches.