The popular television show, What Would You Do, featured an interesting piece that showed a “tan” Mom practically forcing her daughter to tan at the BOCA Tanning Club on the east coast. The actors were each given a role to play. The teenage daughter was depicted as a fair-skinned, light-eyed, blonde girl while the Mother was unnaturally dark and tanned. The Mom continuously tried to force the girl into the tanning bed while onlookers watched and commented. The Mother could be heard saying such things like, “Look at you–you’re pasty white.”
These comments caught the attention of two young women waiting for their tanning session to begin. They came to the aid of the pale teenager–giving her compliments on her naturally fair skin and eyes. Another woman didn’t have a clue when she offered her words of encouragement, “It’s really relaxing in there.”
It wasn’t until an older woman was in the waiting area before her spray tan that the situation got serious. She openly admitted to being a skin cancer survivor. She showed the teenage girl her scar , with tears in her eyes, explaining that it was because of tanning beds that she developed skin cancer. The woman asks the tanning Mom what was more important; a healthy daughter or a tan daughter? Her last words were, “Your Mom needs a wake-up call.”
The closing message of the show was to learn before you burn. If only a former skin cancer or melanoma patient could sit in the waiting rooms of all tanning salons–then maybe young girls without the proper knowledge of the dangers of tanning salons would be persuaded to walk away.
You can watch the full episode here. Feel free to leave your comments and don’t hesitate to speak up if you are ever in a situation like this!