Obesity is an epidemic in the United States, and childhood obesity has become such a growing concern that it's an item on the White House's agenda. First Lady Michelle Obama's anti-obesity campaign is already in full swing, and recently Beyonce joined to endorse the "Lets Move" campaign and encourage kids to stay fit and eat healthily. But is this health kick going too far now that Sketchers' Shape-Ups are being marketed to tweens?
With about about 30 percent of black girls susceptible to obesity, it makes sense to encourage that demographic to exercise and be fit. But the Shape-Ups seems to be less concerned with fitness and more concerned with vanity.
The shoes were originally marketed to women with the promise of toning calves and boosting a shapelier bottom. It speaks volumes that Kim Kardashian endorses the shoes. But children don't need another product making them preoccupied with their appearance when there is already an influx of media images telling them to strive for an unrealistic body image.
In the kid's commercial, a young girl struts around in Shape-Ups that keep her "looking good," and give her a bounce that attracts three little boys.
A petition on Change.org is not pleased: "Women have plenty of time to be targeted for their weight throughout their lives. By not only marketing a shoe line to young girls, but also not even having an equivalent for boys Skechers is sending a clear message to girls and women: you're never too young to start hating your body... Tell Skechers to let kids be kids, and stop body policing young girls."