Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Kindness Crisis

This issue is so shameful it makes my blood boil!

Within the last few months, a popular men's magazine (with which I'm only vaguely familiar) declared that the actress Sarah Jessica Parker is the "most unsexy woman in America". They may have even said she is the "most unsexy woman in the world". I don't recall their parameters with great specificity and I'm not in the mood to research the particulars.

This is not a post where I intend to argue on behalf of the actress's beauty or lack thereof. I'm also not discussing the merits of her acting, the roles she chooses, or her morality. Some people think she hangs the moon and others, well...not so much. Whatever. Leave those concerns for the folks who want to devote their time and efforts to the lives of celebrities. This is themommymemoir, not

What makes me apoplectic, however, is the unabashed cruelty of these remarks. Did these goons forget that Sarah Jessica Parker is someone's wife, someone's mother, and someone's daughter? Would they want their wives labeled this way? Their sisters? Why is she the target of these frat boy pundits and their editors? And why is such unchivalrous, ungentlemen-like behavior tolerated?

Apparently, bullying sells magazines. In droves. But what a sad testament to the state of our cultural morality. How are we teaching our young men to value and respect women when this prolific cruelty is a bankable commodity? And what are our young women to think about themselves when they witness such brazen, misogynistic bullying?

Of course, kindness starts in the home. Children have to know that it's not OK, EVER, to intentionally humiliate another human being. Even if that person is in a relative position of power, prestige, or wealth. Even if it seems harmless or funny. And children must witness their parents' commitment against bullying, in all forms. Blatant, subtle, "humorous" or otherwise.

As an aside, I saw Sarah Jessica Parker's fragrance ad in a magazine yesterday. It's been around for some time so it didn't catch my first. And then I noticed the text.

Lovely on the inside. What a refreshing sentiment. I could be wrong but something tells me that the "on the inside" phrase is a recent addition to the ad's text...What a subtle, dignified response to those mean spirited boy-men from that creepy, cheesecake rag. A tasteful reminder that beauty is also about heart, mind, and soul. It's about a radiant inner confidence that speaks volumes about character. It's about having the courage to fully own what one is given and making the best of it. And mostly, it's about rejecting a celluloid, manufactured standard of beauty that is devoid of natural grace and femininity.

Bravo to Sarah Jessica Parker.

Now that's celebrity behavior to emulate. Finally.

1 comment:

WhiteStoneNameSeeker said...

Two of my older kids are Venture Scouts. Last night they went to help out with the Scouts taking their own games and equipment to lend to the younger scout group.
I am told the evening was very difficult because a number of the scouts were simply rude and unpleasant to be around. It was obviously their normal behaviour as the scout leaders tolerated it.
I would be so ashamed if my children behaved like that.

Those men who wrote that nasty stuff in their magazine are obviously used to the idea they can do that.
I'm sick of the MSM and it's blanket use of bullying, name calling and deliberate nastiness to others.
But it starts at home.