“So I got the baby girl’s dimple pierced,” Enedina Vance wrote on Facebook alongside the picture of her daughter. “It looks so cute, right? I just know she’s gonna love it! She’ll thank me when she’s older ... If she decides she doesn’t like it, she can just take it out, no big deal.”
Vance then went on to sarcastically address the possibility of being accused of bad parenting.
But the photo Vance posted was fake; the jewel in her daughter’s cheek was edited onto the photo, which was intended to protest body alterations to children.
“I’m the parent, she is my child, I will do whatever I want!” she continued, ending the caption for the doctored image with “#sarcasm.”
“I make all of her decisions until she’s 18. I made her. I own her! I don’t need anyone’s permission, I think it’s better, cuter, and I prefer her to have her dimple pierced. It’s not abuse! If it was, it would be illegal, but it’s not. People pierce their babies everyday, this is no different,” she wrote.
Many social media users did not realize her post was was not meant to be taken seriously, and Vance was quickly bombarded with death threats, causing her to share two clarifications.
“Wow, so as (hopefully) everyone knows, my last post was fake. I photoshopped that picture of the baby to look like I had her dimple pierced,” she wrote in one post. “I seriously cannot believe how many people missed that this was purely satirical. I actually used the hashtag #sarcasm ... yet people were still threatening to beat me to death, call Child Protective Services and take away my children. I even explained within the comments that this was fake, that I edited the photo and that I’m actually an intactivist.”
At least one definition online defines intactivist as “someone who loves, honors, respects and protects the rights of the child to an intact body. Someone who sees genital mutilation of girls or boys as a contradiction to that fundamental human right.”
“Honestly, my post was meant to shock parents into seeing their children as human beings and to respect them as such,” Vance followed up in another post. “Every angry person who shared my post, did so in an attempt to shine light on an injustice.”