Del Williams

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Beauty is Not Worth Dying For: It's Time to Change the Message

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There has been a lot of talk lately about the promotion of eating disorders. Some social media sites and blogs are getting the blame, but really it is the cultural mindset that is at issue. These men and women starve themselves to become something that society has ingrained in them that if they are thin they will be loved, popular, and accepted.

For example, in this age of beauty, it seems to me that society defines that as thin, white and blonde. That might be an over generalization, but pretty much it's true. OK, the race is genes and nothing can be done about that. Anyone can be blonde thanks to Miss Clairol, but the thin...hmmm.

Photos on magazines are Photoshopped taking pounds off people, removing every blemish to make the "perfect woman." Often times I am reminded that the late Karen Carpenter started her downward spiral due to the flippant remark of a reporter about her weight. Her music had not changed. Her talent was just as strong, but in that moment he reduced her to nothing but looks.

Sadly she lost her battle with eating when her heart gave out. I have always wondered if that reporter realized the damage his mouth cause. The loss to the world his words caused. I doubt it.

People are impressionable and if you tell someone often enough that he/she is less than because of how they look,  they will believe you. The clear message to girls today is you are without value if you do not look the way we want you to look. It doesn't matter what you accomplish. This is not the message we want to send, but we are.

There was a documentary called "Miss Representation" which speaks of this, and although it lays it at the media's feet, I still hold that we are the real messengers. The women who are constantly on diets, getting unnecessary plastic surgery, and playing dumb to be accepted, are sending the message. It's time for that message to change to acceptance of self.
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1 comments:

Rieva said...

You're so right. Young girls are so impressionable. It's really important to let them know it's their brains, and not their beauty that's most important.