With everyone and their mother emphasizing being politically correct, and throwing out the term like it’s synonymous with the basic “please” and “thank you,” it’s hard to get away with saying anything, sans social scrutiny. We have campaigns for everything from anti-bullying (even more specifically, cyber-bullying,) to fat shaming. There is a movement for every possibly rude, mean, or offensive situation. Is this a good thing? It seems to be. I certainly support the saying we’re taught back in preschool, you know the one that emphasizes being nice…
Although there are countless topics on bashing certain people, criticizing particular characteristics, and other such problems that we can, and must address, today I want to shed light on body-shaming; more specifically skinny-shaming.
Body-shaming was traditionally deemed as poking fun at, harassing, and satirizing an individual for being overweight. The term however has extended its reach, encompassing all criticism of one’s body – small or large, tall or short, tan or pale, etc. Today, with our social media run world, no one is safe from the haters or their biting remarks, not even “10s,” supermodels, or even celebrities.
As if it’s not enough that we’re all (most of us at least) self-critical on our own, due to the media’s and society’s years of brain-washing us, we must now worry about extra criticism from trolls. Many of us want to live a healthy life, a positive thing, without a doubt! Yet, more often than not we end up dieting, over-exercising, and starving ourselves in an attempt to reach the same level of beauty of the pretty model-girl we follow on Insta.
Guess what? That perfect girl, the freaking archetype of beauty, and your very own #bodygoals, has has haters too! Sjana Earp, who boasts 1.1 million followers, is a prime example. Although most of her posts are flooded with #goals, #muse, #inspiration in the comments section, there are unfortunately more than enough negative and cruel inputs.
Some criticize Sjana for being too skinny, calling her look and body “disgusting” or comparing her to a little boy. It is clear from her various yoga pose photos that the girl is fit and strong, she clearly works hard for her body, and even if she was born with a more “petite” frame than someone else, why must we put her down?! She is not the only one to receive such negative feedback and bullying either. This happens to the likes of recently-fit Khloe Kardashian, models like Jourdan Dunn, and you basic hot Instagram wannabe-model.
Sure some people might just be jealous and insecure so they take it out on the seemingly confident girls living their dreams. But, some of the comments and hate mail that models, fit-models, and celebrities receive is truly awful. More importantly it is body-shaming. Calling out this behavior and bringing it to the forefront of the body-shaming discussion is imperative. Mean comments, no matter which part of the skinny to fat spectrum they fall on, are just that, mean.
Don’t forget the golden rule: treat others the way you want to be treated. And never, ever shame someone else’s body, your opinion is not universal, final, and no one asked for it. So before you go on and hurt another’s feeling, ask, is it necessary, why am I doing this, what benefit do I get, what are the repercussions of my words and actions. Lastly, reflect on yourself and perhaps your own insecurity, before calling out someone else’s.