Good Morning America anchor Lara Spencer caused a stir on social media this week when she laughed on-air about Prince William and Kate Middleton’s oldest son Prince George’s love for ballet.
It seems that in addition to normal subjects such as math, science, and history, little George is also taking classes like computer programming, religious studies, poetry, and a ballet class.
“Prince William said Prince George absolutely loves ballet…I have news for you Prince William, we’ll see how long that lasts,” Spencer said laughing.
After the segment aired, fans who saw the show began to express their displeasure with the laughter on social media.
“This adorable boy (Prince George) is being shamed by a grown woman on National Television in America for taking ballet! @lara.spencer you should be ashamed of yourself as well as @gstephanopoulos for laughing along & @goodmorningamerica for letting public shaming of young boys happen,” dancer and choreographer Brian Friedman wrote.
“Would you be making fun of Princess Charlotte for wanting to become a scientist? Then why is it ok to make fun of a child that enjoys one of the most beautiful, athletic, and incredibly difficult art forms that exist?” another angry person stated.
It's back to school time for British royals Prince George and Princess Charlotte. https://t.co/jkw3HuKVLA
— Good Morning America (@GMA) August 23, 2019
Dance Magazine slammed Good Morning America and Lara Spencer over the situation, claiming that in the year 2019 there is no way it is acceptable for anyone to “patronize” anyone else over gender stereotypes.
The magazine went on to reveal that the possible bright spot in the controversy is that members of the ballet community have come forward to share support for Prince George, as well as speak out about Spencer’s offensive comments.
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???? Happy Birthday Prince George! The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to share new photographs of Prince George to mark His Royal Highness's sixth birthday. This photograph was taken on holiday with the family by The Duchess of Cambridge. Thank you everyone for all your lovely messages!
An online petition has also been started asking GMA to produce a segment for their show about the benefits of ballet training for boys and young men.
Artistry House reports that some of the perks of boys taking ballet include improvement of balance, flexibility, strength, and endurance, which can help with their footwork if they play sports such as football and soccer. In addition, ballet reportedly helps young men learn how to deal with their emotions in a healthy way—through dance.
The outlet also cites a rise in self-confidence and opportunities for a career in dance as two of the other major benefits of boys and young men participating in ballet classes.
Lara Spencer has since apologized for her comments about Prince George.