Sponsored By
An organization or individual has paid for the creation of this work but did not approve or review it.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

We need normal-sized role models

Britney Spears' Sunday appearance on MTV Video Awards wasn't good. Much of the criticism was due to her poor performance, critics said. Other commentators scolded her for carrying too much weight. Many said she was too fat; The New York Post call...

Britney Spears' Sunday appearance on MTV Video Awards wasn't good. Much of the criticism was due to her poor performance, critics said. Other commentators scolded her for carrying too much weight. Many said she was too fat; The New York Post called her "lard and clear."

She looked normal to me. Her appearance and the subsequent comments just reinforce what major media does to the image of women, and how we accept those television and MTV images as models of what we should strive to be. Whatever happened to the curvaceous Rubenesque look? For that matter, whatever happened to movie stars such as Marilyn Monroe or Jayne Mansfield? They certainly weren't sizes 2 or 4.

There is too much influence on the public by stars such as Spears, Paris Hilton and others who worship the altar of too many "material things" and not enough healthy living.

And then there's the skinny, lanky models who also set the norm for us - "skeletors," one of my friends calls them.

Unfortunately, none of their routines call for fast food. Come to think of it, neither does an Altru study group working toward better health that I'm a part of. The group is set up to keep diabetes at bay. We are required to weigh in at each of our monthly meetings, and that's when you wish you hadn't indulged in that last Snickers candy bar.

ADVERTISEMENT

We're in a time in our lives when we are bombarded with how skinny we should be, not necessarily how healthy. I would bet a Big Mac that Britney weights right in the center of normal. I wonder what the poor girl will do after all the reviews of her "too fat" body?

The opposite weight problem is true of Angelina Jolie, who is one of my favorite stars. I say she is my favorite because of her role as Lara Croft in the "Tomb Raider" movie and the sequels that followed. My children are always surprised at the films I enjoy - those "sci-fi" and "women who can leap tall buildings" kind of movies.

Before she became so slim (she looks skinny sick to me), Jolie depicted a new kind of woman: a female hero who can whip the most able villain in hand-to-hand combat. I know there are others, but I like her, maybe because she also tries to help the poor and is a humanitarian - which I think is pretty good for a star like her.

On a different level, I had a conversation with one of our tribal leaders last weekend. He hated the media's hold on the lives of young people on reservations. The low-cut pants, the thongs showing above the pants' waistline (that one's maybe "out" now), the tops with the girl's midsection showing - and for boys, the baggy pants.

American Indian culture isn't valued because many of these young people don't understand it, the tribal leader said. But they certainly are fed enough of what is "in" and popular on television, so those in the starlight become their role models.

I cheered when the television show "Ugly Betty" began. At first, I just watched it out of rebellion. Then I got to know the story line and could see that she was just a duckling waiting to become a swan. The important thing is she isn't tall and skinny. She is Hispanic and more Rubenesque than "Twiggy," and you're showing your age if you remember Twiggy. Now that was one slim chick.

We need to cry out for better role models, if not for ourselves, then for our children. Not overweight role models, but ones who fit in the normal range and who live good lives. . . . But then, we probably wouldn't be interested if they were normal and like us.

What To Read Next
Get Local

ADVERTISEMENT