December 20, 2006

The Expectations on the Exploited

Only in America can the women who are exploited for someone's visual pleasure and for another's financial gain be viewed as role models. I remember watching the "beauty pageants" as they were called in the 70's and early 80's. During that time, people called them what they were. I'm sure many of the young women at that time were worthy of the title "role model" as I'm sure some are today. But we deceive ourselves when we believe that just because a vivacious beauty wears a crown, she should be regarded is a role model. 2 things here:

1. I highly question the place of Miss America, Miss USA, Miss Teen USA, etc. in the lives of today's youth. Probably the only young women who watch are on the same track themselves....and others have moms like me who just like to see the pretty dresses. But today, there is no sense in which today's preteens and teens are talking about the pageant over their hot lunch at school. They didn't even know it was on, nor did they care to know.

2. Wearing the crown doesn't make anyone a role model. That's obvious, it's ashame it needs to be said. In many cases, it means that the winner survived a childhood being paraded around hundreds of stages since the age of 2, being forced to let their moms live vicariously through them. If this is the case, they deserve the crown, but that doesn't make them a role model, that makes them a victim.

I'm sure the pageant organizations are doing a lot of financial good for the winners, but I think these are traditions that can go away now, for the good of women everywhere. The two winners who have involved the pageants in recent scandals are probably deeply confused. I'm not shocked by their behaviors, but I am amused by the focus on morality in these cases - morality for which I see no basis or grounding. It's just the pageant's arbitrary rules of conduct. Interesting.

1 comment:

Collin Brendemuehl said...

Ok. So let's have a Christian equivalent. How about "Sheba"? And make it "reality" TV to boot. Have her race around the world to marry her "Solomon". Might be lots of fun!