Sunday, July 20, 2008

Don't Look to Celebrities as Role Models

Submitted by guest writer - JJ

Don’t look to celebrities as role models. Years ago the word “celebrity” conjured up images of glamour and sophistication, of a life filled with beautiful things and lovely people. Think of Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Audrey Hepburn, and Grace Kelly. These were people who seemed to live a life that most Americans would envy. They always looked beautiful in designer clothing, they traveled to exotic locations and stayed at the most upscale hotels. To them image was everything. They cared about what their public thought about them and I think they thought they had a responsibility to be role models because of the attention they received. Even politicians like John F. Kennedy had an image to show to the country. People looked up to him and Jackie and saw their family and lifestyle as something to emulate.

Now anyone can be a “celebrity”! Because of Youtube and Myspace, cellphone cameras and Reality TV as long as you’re in front of the camera, “you’re famous” even if you’ve accomplished nothing and have not one redeeming quality to contribute to our society. Look at who we watch on TV. The Real Housewives of Orange County, Keeping Up With the Kardashians, The Lohans, Denise Richards and on and on. These are pathetic people who are addicted to the camera. They have a “need” for celebrity and will do anything to do keep it, even if it involves “pimping out” their children for air time.

The Gosselins are not at fault for their “celebrity” status, WE ARE! If we would set a higher standard for the people we watch on television then we would be involved in our own lives and not creating Nielson ratings for these people!Most reality shows are scripted , they have product placements, and they are filmed to create the most interest by showing footage with the most drama.

I think it’s time to once again look for those role models in entertainment, sports, and politics. It’s a shame when our kids think that what they see on television is the norm. That everyone has affairs, that drug rehab is normal, that most politicians are liars, that oral sex is “not sex”! There are good leaders out there. We should be watching them and making them our role models, not some reality TV family who got caught up in a situation that we, the public, put them in!


Anonymous said...

You are right. We should just leave these people alone and take the show for what it is or not watch if we don't like it.

Anya said...

You are totally right, of course. I think the added danger with these "celebrity" reality stars is that average people can get attached to them in a way they wouldn't with a big-time Hollywood star, for example. People see the Gosselins are like them and many seem to bitterly resent it when they a) don't live up to their expectations or b) receive "freebies" or other things which the audience feels they did not earn.

The whole identification thing leads to a lot of the venom and over-involvement that we are seeing spewed out daily on other sites. Kind of sad and scary....

Guinevere said...

I don't get the jealousy and resentment. I happened to read some comments that had been posted on the "other site" (not on the site itself; I won't go there because the bile and negativity make my stomach hurt; rather on the Princess Marie Chantal boards, where they have a thread devoted to making fun of the other site). These comments were to the effect that Kate would have to buy cheap brand groceries now, rather than organic stuff, and wouldn't that just serve her right?

I mean, last I heard, wanting to feed your kids healthy food was a good thing. These people claim to care so much about the Gosselin kids, but they care far more about putting Kate in her place. It's just bizarre to me.

I don't care if J&K get freebies. I get mildly annoyed (very mildly) when I hear about, say, award-show gift baskets, or film festival hospitality suites, because those stars are really rich, far beyond J&K, and they can afford to buy their own stuff. But ultimately, it's not an injustice I'm going to waste much energy on. Life isn't fair. It's better to think of all you have rather than focus on someone you think has more than you, even if you think they didn't "earn" it.

Anonymous said...

I don't mind if Jon and Kate have to put themselves out to support their children. I mind that they have their young children supporting them. This couple really bothers me because I couldn't imagine subjecting my children to such an invasion of privacy. If Jon and Kate want to do books and speaking tours and people will pay for that, well, I wouldn't, but that's people's choice. Broadcasting your kids private bathroom activities is another. These people don't seem to know where to draw the line. Yes, they need food and clothes. Do they need to sell their kids' images for free plastic surgery? I don't think so.