Jada Pinkett Smith is deploring the negative reaction to images of her daughter Willow Smith on a bed with a 20-year-old guy.
The blogosphere went into a frenzy Wednesday when black-and-white images were posted on Instagram and Tumblr showing the 13-year-old lying on a bed with shirtless “Hannah Montana” actor Moises Arias -- a good friend of Willow’s older brother, Jaden, 15.
“Here’s the deal,” the mom told the paparazzi via TMZ at LAX Airport on Wednesday. “There was nothing sexual about that picture or that situation. You guys are projecting your trash onto it.
“You’re acting like covert pedophiles and that’s not cool,” she added as she was arriving at the airport from a trip to New York City. Pinkett Smith did not answer follow-up questions after giving her statements, which were videotaped and posted online.
The photos have since been removed from Arias’ accounts, but not before being picked up by news outlets and social-media users.
Neither Arias nor Willow nor her famous parents -- “Fresh Prince” alum Will Smith and his wife -- gave comments on the topic until Pinkett Smith was accosted at the airport by paparazzi.
However, sources had told TMZ earlier Wednesday that the parents consider their daughter “very mature” and capable of making her own decisions, as long as she doesn’t clearly cross the line. They reportedly see these pictures as innocent. Arias has known the family for years, the site said.
In a 2013 interview with Metro, Will Smith explained his and his wife’s parenting style, saying that they “don’t do punishment.”
“The way that we deal with our kids is, they are responsible for their lives,” he said. “Our concept is, as young as possible, give them as much control over their lives as possible and the concept of punishment, our experience has been -- it has a little too much of a negative quality. So when they do things -- and you know, Jaden, he’s done things -- you can do anything you want as long as you can explain to me why that was the right thing to do for your life.”
The Smiths seem to be turning the “Parents Just Don’t Understand” logic on its head.