On February 6th, Nickelodeon announced the nominees for their annual slime parade, the Kids Choice Awards. Two days later, Chris Brown—a Kids Choice nominee for Favorite Song and Favorite Male Singer—was arrested for assaulting Rihanna—a Kids Choice nominee for Favorite Song and Favorite Female Singer. As you've probably heard by now, Nickelodeon/Viacom has, perhaps unwisely, decided to let those nominations stand, leading thousands of parents to scream at their cold, unfeeling televisions, "But what about the children!?!"
From ABC News:
Psychologist Cara Gardenswartz, an expert for Momlogic.com, questioned Nickelodeon's decision to keep Brown on the ballot.
"Nickelodeon is an adult-run network that is saying we are letting the kids decide. They are saying we don't need adults to step in and say that this is inappropriate," Gardenswartz said. "It's setting a horrible precedent and it's damaging. Kids can't differentiate between (Brown's) actions and his songs."
I'm no psychologist or expert for momlogic.com (Although I'd love to be. Call me!), but, sure, kids might have a problem differentiating between Brown's terrible actions and Brown's "Kiss Kiss" if they lived in a vacuum lined with countless television screens all tuned to Nickelodeon. But they don't. Most kids, except the feral ones, live with parents or guardians who could no doubt help them make that very important distinction (or just not allow them to watch the show, thereby avoiding or delaying the conversation).
But it seems that these angry parents have a hard time understanding even what The Kids Choice Awards are for.
From their online petition:
While we don't think public figures are expected to always act responsibly in the name of being a role-model, this situation is unacceptable on both sides. To say that either of these people setting a suitable example to be held up as "winners" is preposterous.
There seems to be some confusion. The Kids Choice Awards aren't The Life Awards. (Not even The Oscars are the Life Awards. Right, Polanski?) Just because someone wins an award doesn't mean that they're a winner in all aspects of life—far from it. After all, if The Kids Choice Awards were the Role Model Awards then would Kid Rock be nominated? Or T-Pain? Or The Pussycat Dolls? And if parents think that the work of these people shouldn't recieve slime recognition because of their despicable actions, or Waffle House brawls, or general suckiness, the onus is on the parents, not Viacom, to make sure their kids know that. Why would anyone rely on Viacom for anything besides putting gas in the Next bus anyway?
Still, even though Nickelodeon/Viacom won't remove Chris Brown from Role Model Award contention, they will subtly steer kid voters away from him. Brown's nominee photo is one of the only unsmiling ones, which definitely isn't due to a lack of "happy" "smiley" Chris Brown photos.
He even looks menacing next to Kid Rock and T-Pain.