I can’t imagine what it’s like to be famous. A big part of me shudders at the thought; the being so conspicuous, the death threats, the obsessive stalkers, the pressure to do certain things or act a certain way. The idea that you have managers or stylists or publicists or whoever else transforming or representing you based on their idea of beauty or perfection or appeal to the masses rather than your own personality and truth is not right at all. Not right for the soul.
But it must also be a giant ego boost to know that you have fans; to know that what you do or say could influence the next big wave of thought or action. There is great power in that. Everyone wants to feel desired, right? If you’ve got an idea that you feel worth shouting about at the top of your lungs, you want to be heard, right? Being in a public position allows you to have the means by which to get that message across.
Striving for greatness and having fame as a by-product is fine, in my humble, nobody, average-kinda-gal opinion, but what about these people that make up a substantial portion of the famous-that-be? You have got to be kidding me with these socialites and their contributions that stretch little further than how to be aesthetically-pleasing – only part of the time. How is this the way that the world works? I’m referring to these social-charmers that because of their looks and supposed sex appeal are dangled in front of us through a variety of media, setting disgraceful standards for what is considered a role model; a person to be inspired by. I’m talking about these people that put all the emphasis on surface-level bull-crap: appearance and money.
Why are the pioneers of a better world not the face of big brands, on the pages of magazines, on the front covers of the papers? I’m referring to the type of person whose aim is to encourage us to grow and develop and cultivate our passions. It’s rather simple really; it all comes down to our narrow-track, carnal, animalistic, basal nature: sex sells. You’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned as I’ve paved the road to adulthood, it’s that your sexuality plays a damn important role in your life. It will either be the reason you’re discriminated, ostracised, praised, facilitated, endangered, victimised, or worshipped.
We like to think we’re all high and mighty, but we are still putting the wrong people on the pedestals of western society. Granted, you can ignore a huge chunk of these shallow sources that serve you in no way, but you can’t get away from it all. And in particular it’s the youth that are hit most. I don’t think I’d be the only one to say that I am glad my awkward teenage years are behind me now. That is not a period of my life I’d like to relive, because at the time I had little sense of identity, little confidence in many respects. I was easily influenced and forever changing my persona based on what I thought was cool that week. So with this in mind, why are we flaunting entirely the wrong type of person to young people and telling them that this is who they should aspire to be? We are not inspiring good mental health in the next generation, that’s for sure.
I think certain face and body types are always going to be more aesthetically-appealing to the masses and it’s not even that I’m an advocate for eradicating that, it’s just that you’ve got to ask: being ridiculously good looking does what for the planet? Sure, humans are like art: no two pieces are the same and each has something interesting to cast an eye upon, but beyond that…we’ve got serious issues that need addressing right now – as soon as possible – so we need to be praising the great minds behind the faces; the important stuff.
If I have a kid one day, or a niece or nephew, I want him or her to see kind, selfless, smart souls on the TV or in their magazines; not some self-absorbed, narcissistic so-and-so that has little appeal other than their looks. We can only be the best version of ourselves, but at the end of the day will always be just that: ourselves. So with that as a universal truth, please, for the love of God let’s shift our idols to those with good hearts and souls; give the underdogs a chance to shine.
Photos: Stephanie Lepoint @ Flickr & Southbank Centre @ Flickr