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Is a twerking teddy bear appropriate for your kid?

Tanvier Peart is a happy wife, mom of two little boys, writer and creative director who loves working out...and a good cupcake. Hailing from Baltimore, Maryland, her family now calls the Oklahoma City area home, and embraces sweet tea in...

Twerking teddy bears anger some parents

Videos of twerking stuffed animals might have some rushing to stores to find them but leave others with questions. Is our society oversexualized?

My, how times have changed. Maybe it's me, but does anyone else feel like our society gets raunchier by the day? Certain behaviors just aren't that shocking anymore, and that's a bit scary.

The phenomenon known as "twerking" has completely taken over this country. People can't seem to get enough of this dance craze that has them shaking their rumps without care. It has become so popular that Oxford Dictionaries has added it to its list of acceptable words. As much as I love letting loose from time to time, as a parent, I have to make sure my behavior matches the message I want to send to my children.

Videos are sprouting up on YouTube over these booty-shaking teddy and panda bears. The teddy bear wears a baseball cap and tee that reads "shake it!" as he grooves to the Austin Mahone and Pitbull song "Mmm Yeah." The panda sports a jacket and dances to V.I.C.'s "Wobble." These bears are apparently sold in different Walmart stores across the country, and they divide parents down the line regarding what is and isn't appropriate for their child.

Now, I'll be the first to admit they're kind of cute. I'm not that much of a prude to understand the fun in a toy. Would I ever consider scooping one up for myself or gifting it to a friend? Maybe. Does this mean I would purchase one for my kid? More than likely not.

Obviously I don't think you should give this to a small child, though sadly, I wouldn't put it past people. Facebook and other social media outlets are full of videos showing young children gyrating and shaking their butts as adults cheer them on. Since when is a toddler or child trying to imitate a video girl OK? Our society is already oversexualized enough. I really don't think we need to add to it.

Friends of mine with older children are sometimes appalled at the things they catch them and their peers doing. My question is, can you really get mad at what they do in public when you don't check their actions at home?

I'm well aware that toys and teddy bears aren't always intended for children, but shouldn't those that aren't be sold elsewhere — or at the very least away from general sections intended for children? Then again, it might not be a big deal to companies and some parents, as their child can find toy guns in certain aisles.

Things like this are definitely a personal judgment call each parent will have to make. Some might not see the big deal in their child playing with something like this. Others like myself, who get the humor, might read a little more into the message they want to send.

Where do you stand?

More on twerking

Twerkout: The latest dance cardio workout
Parents freak out over young boy twerking at gay pride event
VIDEO: 3 Steps on how not to twerk

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