The world used to be a different place without mass media, technology and scrutiny. As a member of our university’s newspaper media source and with aspirations to wear a beloved press badge in the future to star-studded events like the Oscars, I find it difficult to pursue a career that can sometimes promote unhealthy and inhuman standards. Clearly, through Photoshop altered images on tabloids, it’s wellknown that mass media’s representation of self-esteem and body image is skewed to say the least. However, I’m more concerned when the judgmental attitude goes beyond physical appearance and begins to comment on morality and character. For instance, Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, the Kardashians and the Duggars are not only thought of in a negative light, but also bullied by many people who feel it is their right to judge them simply because of their fame. I can’t even count the number of times I have heard people say the most horrendous things about each of these celebrities. “Kim Kardashian is famous for being a slut.” “Taylor Swift can’t hold down a boyfriend.” “The Duggars are all creeps.” “Justin Bieber is an alcoholic.” These are just a few comments, but can you imagine if you heard someone say that about you? Better yet, if you had heard someone say that about a friend of yours, how would you feel? People forget that even famous people feel emotion. We also forget that celebrities are just normal human beings, living their life as best they can. They make mistakes, just like all of us and can’t be expected to be perfect girlfriends/boyfriend, flawless at their job or have an ideal relationship with their family either. The inhuman standards not only tremendously affect these celebrities’ emotional state, but these project the idea of accepting offensive behavior. People, especially youth, can indirectly absorb and express similar, but less extreme attacks on their peers. I’m not defending these celebrities and their wrongdoings, but I am defending their right to make mistakes without people reacting in a mob mentality and just jumping on the hatred bandwagon. My niece is four years old and I don’t want her to grow up with the inhuman standards that mass media seems to promote. Hopefully, our generation can correct this societal error. Rebecca White can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mass media’s inhuman standards