I can’t recall how many times I’ve heard this plea. The thought has even crossed my mind occasionally. Whenever I’m babysitting my adorable godson, I see how everyone from friends to strangers dotes over him. There isn’t a head that goes unturned when we’re in public. And who can blame them? He looks like he belongs in a BABY GAP ad. His head full of curls. Those thick eyebrows that furrow in curiosity. And that precious, precious pout that protests so many of my requests.
It’s no surprise that pretty people and cute kids get treated better in society. We’ve seen numerous social experiments. In fact, research shows that people go out of their way to help good-looking people of the same and opposite sex because they want to be liked and accepted by these attractive individuals. Heck, we’ve witnessed it in our everyday lives. So it’s natural to want attractive kids, right?
“A person’s physical attractiveness—the look that they’re basically born with—impacts every individual literally from birth to death,” Dr. Gordon Patzer, who spent 30 years studying physical attractiveness, told NBC’s Dateline. “People are valued more who are higher in physical attractiveness. As distasteful at that might be, that’s the reality.”
In a sense, we are placing a higher value on an adorable kid. Of course, we would hope that a parent would love their kids regardless of their features, but are we perpetuating the importance that society attaches to beauty?
Then again, are most parents-to-be honestly thinking about their kids’ futures and acceptance in society? Or are they simply concerned about getting props for having good genes?
Is it a selfless concern or merely superficial? Sound off!
-Audra E. Lord