*Willow Smith, daughter to megastar Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith, was recently the focus of scrutinizing eyes because of a photo she took and posted on social media.
The photo was of 13-year-old Willow and a shirtless boyfriend (as in friend who happens to be a boy) lying on a bed.
After critics – many of them commenting on social media – and not necessarily journalists, came out speaking against the photo, mom Jada has come to her daughter’s defense, saying it is not the photo, but the mind of those looking at it, that should be put in check.
But the question is: Why put something like this out there in the first place, knowing it will cause controversy?
Obviously, kids will be kids, and parents can raise them any way they see fit. And moreover, public figures are not under any obligation to live their lives based on what others might think.
I get this. I really do.
But then when you see a photo like the one in question, with a teen girl who you know because of her famous parents, and a photo such as this hits the internet, its going to invite criticism.
The drama began earlier this week when Moisés Arias, 20, posted a photo to Instagram in which he was shirtless and in bed next to Willow, who is only 13. While there was no physical contact between them — and Willow was fully clothed — it didn’t stop speculation, and Arias, who appeared as Rico in “Hannah Montana,” deleted the picture.
Jada spoke out about the controversy on Wednesday night when she was approached by paparazzi at Los Angeles International airport.
“Here’s the deal: There was nothing sexual about that picture or that situation,” Jada replied sternly, shaking her finger. “You guys are projecting your trash onto it, and you’re acting like covert pedophiles, and that’s not cool.”
Here is a couple of posts from parents on social media:
I really admire the idea that you consider the children old enough and responsible to make their own decisions. Here’s where I’m confused: who are the parents and who are the children? I have 3 children of my own, 1 daughter and 2 boys and if one of them had the nerve to have an adult in bed with them naked/half naked or fully clothed, that’s when they will have to answer to me or their father.
My teenage daughter had a boy friend for a time (no more) and this kid thought it was just fine to come into my house and into her bedroom and lay on her bed with her too. I kicked his #$%$ outta her room, outta my house, and outta our lives. He was also a lower who failed every cl#$%$ in highschool and my daughter finally saw him for what he was. I’m sorry, but boys and girls don’t need to be on each others beds at all, anytime. It is a signal if you allow it that can lead to another unexpected pregnancy or other problems. Teach your kids to respect their home, their bodies, their privacy and you as parents. Especially in your home.
Granted, it is the responsibility of the person who posted the picture (Moises), or the one who agreed to the posting (Willow), to have captioned it in a way that would clearly state the history of it. But since we are speaking of a 20-year-old attention seeker and his teenaged gal pal here, one who is a celebrity at that, it may be wise to point that chiding finger at them, Mrs. Smith, with advice to consider a different route to publicity in the future.
Either that or keep clearing your throat to answer all the critics whose opinions about it are sure to keep coming.–DeBorah B. Pryor
Thanks to Yahoo News for information used in this story.