When confronted with the question “what is beauty?” there are several answers that can be given. Some say beauty is on the inside, some say it is in the eye of the beholder, some even say there is no beauty in this world but when asked the question “what is physical beauty?” the answers tend to become much more narrow; and by narrow, I mean skinny.
In my nightly meeting with television I came across a show called America’s Next Top Model. This super-model produced show had me watching with my jaw on the floor. I was not reduced to shock by the beauty of these women, but by the commentary of “judges” who decided the flaws of these women. “She isn’t much to look at”, “the makeup is wearing her”, “those shoes make you look fat”, comment after comment of negativity. Don’t get me wrong, everyone is entitled to free speech; AND I could have just changed the channel at any time, but it got me thinking about the young women who attribute the standard of beauty to these prospective models.
How can a young girl struggling with her weight watch that show and not think so much less of themselves. If a 6 feet tall, 130lbs girl can be called chubby (and then rejected for it), then what hope does a 5’8 140lbs girl have in our world of beauty? The reality is that eating disorders, self esteem issues, depression, and many of the mental problems that surround our young women in this country can be traced to a standard of beauty that is considered necessary to be called beautiful. When a boy says a girl is beautiful and she thinks it is a lie, there is a problem.
The issue is not with Top Model, or any show for that matter. The issue lies with the people who empower a standard of beauty that is only Avon deep. Even in our society where physical beauty does not come from the inside, acknowledgment of that beauty always will. We as a people have entrusted the political correct image of our young women to designers. Tell your girlfriend she is beautiful, but show her that she is as well. Tell your daughter she is beautiful, but treat her well because it is true.
I am not suggesting you ignore women who might fit the typical standard of beauty. I do not want to propagate the notion that size is what makes a real woman, but we as a people need to see that a size 0 is created equal to a size 16. Treating each other with dignity should supersede our stigmas about beauty. Limit the power of those who would call our daughters, wives, and mothers anything less than beautiful. Take it upon yourself to see everyone with the same eyes.