Inner Beauty Will Outlast The Beauty That Fades

An Open Letter to Ms. Jeanette O'Donnal:

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You are so proud of your daughters' achievements that your heart could just burst. You have given them the gift of self-expression.

At the risk of bursting your pride, let us suggest an alternate gift for your girls which will leave you with a pride more profound and lasting than the shallow and momentary thrill which thousands of men will soon get from ogling your precious children.

Let us suggest you offer your daughters the gift of self-worth which comes from rising above the current tide that values them more for their looks than their minds, their hearts, or their contribution to others. The tide that tempts them to take their clothes off for a few hundred bucks, when in reality their character, decency and their ability to see beyond the money are worth far more than rubies. The same tide that will one day turn against them, leaving them empty-handed and heartbroken when their outer beauty gives way to old age.

Mama, offer them a better gift, which they can pass on to others ...

To future husbands, who will enjoy a bride all their own, rather than the burden of wondering if every man they meet will have once gotten a cheap thrill off their wife. Surely you wouldn't buy a candy bar that had been licked by others on one side, even though a few licks still leaves you plenty of candy bar for yourself! Neither should they.

To your future grandchildren, who will look up to their mothers for understanding what it means to be truly human, not having traded their clothes for any amount of money; who will thank you for the gift of at least a fighting chance at having an intact family, complete with mother and father, in an age where keeping families united is difficult enough without the added stress of false priorities.

To the young boys, who will read Playboy next month and believe the lie that women are elusive objects, created to arouse their sexual fantasies, made to look at but not touch; boys who must grow up fighting against the vicious pull of pornography in order to one day become faithful, loving husbands.

To us women of average bodies who are told we are not good enough, and made to feel that we don't deserve to keep our husbands if we can't offer them a body that never grows old.

To us husbands who must close the pages of Playboy and go home to a wife who is not airbrushed, but rather is tired and a little overweight from bearing and raising our children.

To us daughters who are tempted to anorexia and bulimia so that we, too, can turn the heads of men we do not know and who do not love us.

Dear Mama, why don't you offer us instead five role models, whose inner beauty and strength outshine and outlast the beauty which fades. Even freedom has its restrictions, in order for it to be enjoyed by all. Look at how many people will thank you and how many lives you will touch by teaching this lesson to your beautiful daughters.

The Jonathan Marsh family and Jaime Silva family, Payson

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