27 yr old model Ali Michael came under fire after putting a picture of stranger things actor Finn wolfhard with the caption ‘not to be weird but hit me up in four years.’ Finn is a 14 year old child and so the internet were outraged, calling her a ‘creep’ and using her social media profiles to tell her she was being innapropriate. The following day, Michael apologized for her comment saying ‘It was never my intention (nor has it ever been) to sexualize a minor in any way shape or form.
To those I offended or misled, I apologize for a post made in haste and lacking in sensitivity, particularly considering the landscape of the present culture.’ Finn Wolfhard was approached at the airport and questioned about his thoughts on Ali Michaels comment, he responded ‘that was gross’ and added that it was good she had apologised.Many people came to Ali’s defence and criticised Finn by saying ‘he should feel complimented’ and that they ‘would love that attention.
‘ These comments made it clear that there is a double standard in the industry and in society when it comes to men, women, boys and girls. There would be a different reaction if a 27 year old man had said the same thing as Ali about 13 year old actress Millie Bobby Brown. The outrage would be more so and there certainly wouldn’t be any support of the man and criticism of the child.Unfortunately it isn’t only Wolfhard being sexualised. Costar, Millie Bobby Brown was named one of the sexiest actresses on television in W magazine, advertising this article on their front page. Brown, while a beautiful, talented and elegant young girl, she is 13 and calling her ‘sexy’ is one label that is incredibly inappropriate.
By doing so people are continuing to normalise the sexualisation of child actors and in some cases normalising pedophilia.Just because someone is in the public eye, it does not give the right for anyone to violate them, adults and especially children don’t deserve to have their innocence taken away from them and no one deserves to be sexualised without their consent, these children first and foremost.Mara Wilson, former child star who became famous with her roles in Matilda and Miracle on 34th street wrote for Elle.com talking about the ‘disturbing trend of sexualising child actors’ saying ‘Even before I was out of middle school, I had been featured on foot fetish websites, photoshopped into child porn, and received all kinds of letters and messages online from grown men,’ Mara who is now 30 shows explicitly that in the 15 years or so since she was a child actor herself, nothing has really changed.