As the temperature heats up, the desire to go to the beach is felt by all. This may sound like a great day to most, but to some it is like being placed in front of a firing squad. The thought of laying out in a two piece can be cringing to girls because of the high standards set by the media industry. Most gossip magazines have the most sales with pictures of celebrities in swimsuits on the cover or featured inside. One of Sports Illustrated's highest grossing issue's is the swimsuit edition. This puts pressure on all the girls looking to impress in a bikini, but I have learned that most of the time it is not in their heads. When these pictures of Nicole Richie were released, the media went crazy with her being anorexic, but before it was constant talk of her being overweight or vuloptuous. Then they wonder why girls have eating disorders? It is like you cannot win. Either your too fat or too skinny, short or tall, small or large. At the end of the day if you aren't happy with yourself in your own skin, no one is going to want to be around you.
Girls aren't the only ones brainwashed by the bikini buzz. Men also have their own standards set by the media as to what women should look like in their bathing suits. I experienced this first hand on one of the first warm days of the season. Everyone crowded together at local Puffer's Pond to relax and catch some rays. I happened to be with a group of young men who didn't exactly treat each girl with the respect they deserved. Every comment out of their mouths was about their chest or behind, and if it wasn't that it was about their weight and how they could spare to shed a few pounds. It really made me think about if the tables were turned. What if girls just sat around critiquing every little inch of a boys body? Criticizing eyes are always turned to yound females, and compared to the pin-thin celebs that are pictured on the covers of every magazine.
After a picture of Jessica Simpson was released to the public of her singing at a concert. Headlines of a FAT Simpson were everywhere. Even on the news outlet CNN, they talked about the singers supposed weight gain. Everyone was talking about how she let herself go, and how bad she looked.
The media's vision seem to point out only imperfections, making what the beauty ideal is of "perfection" be completely impossible.
I think it is amazing that something as stupid as a woman gaining a couple pounds can make national news. Also it is amazing that they used the term fat. In no way is she fat, yes she might have gained a couple pounds, but is it really necessary to point it out to the world? It gives a very negative connotation on the female body, and young women who look up to her might look in the mirror and question their own bodies. This can lead to a number of unhealthy lifestyle changes. I just think stations like CNN should stick to things that are actually newsworthy, and maybe our society would deal with image a bit better.
It is not just the news on television or on computers that is sending us these messages in order to stay thin. Several popular magazines can't go one issue without publishing the newest diet. In the world of women’s magazines today, we have several that are all telling us the same thing-how to be/stay thin. If a women walks up to a magazine shelf the pages are basically screaming to lose weight or be skinny. Pin thin models and actresses are plastered on to every cover. I skimmed through each of these magazines above, and they all had at least 5 articles on how to be skinny.
Being healthy is one thing, but in today’s society image beats out all other crudentials in a person. We have a completely image driven society, and several self esteem issues can be seen with young women today. They are always comparing themselves to the celebrities/models they see all over the place, and can’t appreciate themselves as an individual with thoughts and dreams, all they can see is the number on the scale.
When it comes to celebrity obsession, in today's society the updates don't just come from a weekly magazine or daily newspaper. They are uploaded at the speed of light on blogs. Every minute you can go to a website and find out what's new in the world of celebrities. Even with the website Twitter you can hear from the stars themselves to know what's going on. Now the bloggers themselves are becoming famous like Perez Hilton. There is even a website called "I'm not obsessed" that actually lets you buy clothes similar to those of celebrities. Funny that it is called I'm not obsessed when it seems like the obsession just hit a whole new level. Children are growing up surrounded with the news of famous actors and models instead of news around the world. With outlets like CNN making celebrity weight issues front page news, it is scary to think about the priorities in this society.
When I was growing up, dreams of being a celebrity were a rarity. Most everyone I knew wanted to be a teacher or nurse. Now a days with young famous role models like Miley Cyrus, young women want to grow up to be actresses, models, or singers. Major media outlets like Disney are representing kids to be older then they really are. There is much more pressure to be wealthy and famous then there ever was, and children are growing up thinking this is what they have to be because of what they see on television. If this keeps up there is going to be a lot more struggling actors in the world then struggling students.
The lifestyles of young, rich, and sometimes famous people are also appearing all over the reality television scene. When flipping on the television today, there are hundreds of reality tv shows. MTV has made it a point to display their potrayal of what life is like for high school students. With shows like Laguna Beach and True Life, MTV gives a limited representation of what kids do in high school. Most of the time it is kids going out and socializing-homework is NEVER a topic on a show because well, it’s not entertraining. They are giving a distorted image to entertain teens. The problem is, most of these shows are scripted and are made just to get good ratings and enhance the company. Kids grow up and think they should act as how they see the kids do on tv. With this “reality” comes a harsh realization when they figure out that life’s not a beach party like they show on tv.