“Run Like a Girl”: Movement encourages phrase to be used as a compliment

Natalia Gevara, Entertainment Editor

Run like a girl, throw like a girl, fight like a girl; all of these phrases are used to embarrass, belittle, and demean females. But some are speaking up and asking the question: what is wrong with doing something ‘“like a girl”?

According to Lauren Greenfield, absolutely nothing. The award-winning filmmaker teamed up with the Procter & Gamble owned feminine hygiene brand “Always” to criticize what they call “the self-esteem crisis” among young girls and challenge the detrimental female stereotypes in today’s society.

In the video, Greenfield asks men and women of different ages to demonstrate what they believe it means to them to performs tasks “like a girl.”

The results are rather disappointing. While the much younger girls carry out the orders to their best ability — the older men and women act it out in an inept and mocking matter.

The primary goal of the “#LikeAGirl campaign” is to instill confidence in young girls going through puberty and to note that being compared to a girl is anything but derogatory.

“One of the things that Always was interested in looking into is how girls deal with the confidence crisis that happens around puberty,” Greenfield said in an interview with ABC News. “Everyone knows that ‘crying like a girl’ or ‘running like a girl’ isn’t a compliment, but no one takes the off-the-cuff remark too seriously or considers its damage.”

Throughout society, there have been a number of stereotypes surrounding females’ overall strength. These stereotypes come across as being quite harmless, but others say that these messages contribute to a mindset that leads to the injury of a female’s self-confidence and erase the achievements of girls who have outstanding mental and physical capabilities.

“It is very unfair,” sophomore Carmen Oaks said, “The phrase ‘like a girl’ shouldn’t mean that you’re bad at something, there are many female athletes who are very good examples of how insulting someone by saying ‘like a girl’ amounts to nothing.”

The negative connotation of ‘“like a girl” is thrown around carelessly by people of all ages and genders. However, many take offense to having their physique compared to that of females.

“If we were to use ‘throw like a boy’ and ‘hit like a boy’ as an insult, males would be offended too,” junior Alex Mar said.

“I feel that it’s hurtful,” sophomore Edric Liong said. “Some girls might be better than guys at a sport — I imagine that they find it very insulting.”

After Greenfield explains the purpose of the experiment, the video ends with the question: “Why can’t ‘run like a girl’ also mean to win the race?”

“Yes, I kick like a girl, and I swim like a girl, and I walk like a girl, and I wake up in the morning like a girl — because I am a girl,” one of the female participants in the campaign said.

Although there is no guarantee that these types of campaigns will completely end the negative connotation that is synonymous with being compared to a female, they could help transform the term “like a girl” from one demonstrating flailing arms and clumsy movements — to one of confidence, poise and strength.