Can we all agree on the fact that judging a 14 year-old girl by their sex appeal is, well, gross and messed up? It’s one thing to experience it as an adult throughout your entire career but it’s another to be developing your hobbies, values and passions and then all of a sudden told “forget about talent, focus on wearing sexier skirts!” Yes, this is shameful and repulsive but no this is not uncommon. You can literally take any child actress or man-made all-female band (i.e. The Runaways) and apply the same shameful way of thinking.

Last weekend, Kalliope Jones—a three piece band consisting of 16-year-old singer-guitarist Isabella DeHerdt, 14-year-old drummer Alouette Batteau and 14-year-old bassist Amelia Chalfant—ran into one of the most blatant and deeply rooted forms of sexism, while performing in Massachusetts’ Three County Fair Battle of the Bands. They received third place in the competition for not “using the sultry in the voice” as written in the comments section of their points sheet by the judge. Oh, but at least he left a little note at the end to make them feel better, “Chicks Rock!.” Cool. Here’s what the band had to say about it.

 

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And just to make their point clearer:

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As you can see, these girls were outraged—how could they not be? They had probably been practicing and prepping for that show weeks in advance, excited about the prospect of performing their music in front of an audience that would appreciate their musicianship. Although that’s not how they were received, the fact that they used their anger and voice to address this incident—something that just as easily could’ve been embarrassing and kicked under the rug—not to mention the nation wide attention this story received, says so much about the importance of teaching people to stand up for themselves and speak out.

This is an experience that these girls will probably never forget—but they’ll remember it as the time that they had an impact and a voice on the way people viewed women/girls and sexism , not the time they were victims of it.