Why This Mom Is So Upset That A Man Thinks Her Daughter Is Pretty

This is Miranda Stewart Hunter, her husband, and her daughter. Her little girl is in the 6th grade, and she just won her middle school spelling bee.
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But instead of congratulating how smart she is, one dad instead complimented the girl's appearance.
Stewart Hunter took to the private Facebook group Pantsuit Nation to write about how unsettled she felt by his comment.
"Tonight, my sixth grade daughter won the middle school spelling bee. I'm incredibly proud of her," she wrote. "I was talking with the female librarian who runs the spelling bee, and we were discussing how great it is for young girls to be affirmed for their brains and not their bodies. A moment later, a colleague of mine whose son was competing approached me to offer congratulations. And what did he say? Not, 'Wow, what a great speller!' or 'She's really smart!' Nope. He compliments me on how pretty she is."
Stewart Hunter isn't denying that her daughter is pretty. She's beautiful. But her looks weren't important in that moment.
"All I did was thank him and move on, but thinking back over the night, I was struck by the subtle sexism in his words," she wrote. "If the situation had been reversed, and his son had won, I'd never have told him how handsome his son is. I'd have commented on something substantive, something relevant, like maybe his spelling ability."
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She then wrote that she might just be overthinking everything, or overly sensitive since taking part in the Women's March. But, the thing is, she's definitely not being overly sensitive. Her point is valid and strong. Little boys aren't complimented on their looks when they win academic challenges, they're complimented on how smart they are. But instead of noticing them for their intelligence, little girls like Stewart Hunter's daughter are noticed for their beauty. And that needs to stop.
In the few days since her initial post on Pantsuit Nation, Stewart Hunter has had a chance to confront the dad who commented on her daughter's looks.
"He again complimented her beauty," she wrote on the updated post. "This time I was ready, and I said, 'She is, but that's not what makes me most proud. I'm proud of her intelligence, her poise under pressure, and hard work.'"