Once upon a time, a long time ago in a place called America baby girls and boys were always beautiful. Family and friends gathered at their birth and upon their arrival home to marvel at the beauty of God’s gift and the parent’s DNA. The awkwardness or special curl of little Amanda’s nose was something that made her family loved; the way that little Tyrone’s lip curled slightly to the left convinced his grandpa that he inherited the Johnson smile that would charm all the girls as he grew into a boy and later a man. Today, however, things have changed drastically and people are instead searching for good botox in NJ to get the desired looks.

In is now the year 2011, and across the bridge, Mr. &Mrs. Rockadollar is meeting with a geneticist so that they can choose the color of their baby boy’s eyes; they want them to be baby blue to match the blonde hair they have also chosen for the color of his hair.

In Slocum, Alabama Callahan Waybright and his wife Malean are at the dentist with little Scout so that the dentist can make a cast of her teeth for an upper flipper. After they leave the dentist’s office they will take Scout to the Esthetician so that she can have her face exfoliated; Scout is competing next week in the semi-finals for the little Miss Tomato/Potato Queen title, she is four years old.

On a chilled day in Minneapolis, Trayon Billingsly is going to a personal trainer; his mother wants him to lose 10 pounds. The pediatrician believes that Trayon is in excellent physical shape, his weight and height are in proportion for his age and he is a very active little boy. Trayon is six years old and his mother wants him to be more muscular; she wants his arms and legs to be more defined.

San Francisco resident and mother Kerry Campbell recently made headlines when she allegedly injected Botox into the face of her 8-year old daughter Britney. A news report suggests that Campbell believed that the injections would remove wrinkles and give her daughter an edge in an upcoming beauty competition.

The television show Toddlers &Tiaras on the TLC network phoenix persona is perhaps an impetus for the redefinition of beauty in babies and children. The real beauty of a child is God’s creation, innocence, purity, the natural body transition from plump or awkward to slim and athletic. It is the natural change of hair color from light to dark and from tight to loose tresses. It is the natural progression from a shy smile and tight hold of a mother’s hand to the talkative inquisitive interrogation of why and when of everything. The innocent of a child’s smile like the honesty of the words they speak are being altered by mothers and dads whose own self perceived physical anomalies are transferred to the transformation of their already beautiful children.

Bleached hair, fake eyelashes, push-up bras, high heel shoes, hair extensions, facial peels, botox injections, personal trainers and threaded eyebrows do not a pretty child make. I am saddened by the redefinition of beauty in children and our society in general. A television actress on one of my once favorite soaps was once a beautiful dark-haired woman with an amazingly bright smile. With either botox or collagen injections, her face is now one-sided and her lips are three times their normal and natural size; she is no longer pretty she is the now the epitome of beauty the new ugly.

The new ugly is not only physical but extends to precocious, ill-mannered, disrespectful, unappreciative, ungrateful, entitled and materialist children who will more than likely grow up to be adult versions of the same. Another TLC television show “Outrageous Kids Parties” is a perfect example of this new ugly personified. It portrays bratty, spoiled, disrespectful children whose parents lack many parental skills and a vocabulary that excludes the work no.

I am grateful that I am at an age where my future will not be determined by politicians, medical professionals or others that might come from the candidate pool of these children. I imagine if this trend and perception of beauty persists, in twenty-five years the world will really be an ugly place to live, beauty is now the new ugly.