Things That Make You Go Hmm: Are We Bullying Our Young Artists?
We’ve seen a lot of celebrities step up to stamp out bullying: The cast from True Blood joined in with the It Gets Better project; several famous names including Amy Poehler, Shaq, and Mario Lopez stepped up for the Amplify Your Voice campaign; and Glee got in on the action, dedicating an episode to the bullying epidemic.
But, what happens when celebrities get bullied?
Wait a minute…
Do celebrities get bullied?
Yes, according to Jada Pinkett Smith, who recently took to her Facebook to address the issue.
Pinkett Smith isn’t happy with the way celebrities are addressed (i.e., attacked) in the media, and wonders how — if at all — it differs from bullying among us regular folk:
How can we ask for our young stars to have a high level of responsibility if we are not demonstrating that same level of responsibility towards them? I had to really evaluate the communication in regard to our young artists in the media. I was trying to differentiate cyber-bullying from how we attack and ridicule our young stars through media and social networks.
Atop the Facebook post is a picture collage of Rihanna, Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift, and nine-year-old child actress Quvenzhane Wallis — a few of the young stars Pinkett Smith refers to both directly and indirectly.
“Do we feel as though we can say and do what we please without demonstrating any responsibility simply because they are famous?”
I won’t pretend I’ve never poked fun at celebrities, and I probably won’t stop. As long as it’s good-natured ribbing and not malicious — as long as I’m not setting out to hurt someone’s feelings or judge someone’s behavior (beyond a simple, “Ah, he probably shouldn’t have done that”), I don’t see any harm.
However, I also can’t pretend I’ve never had some mean-spirited things to say, too. I’m not proud of that behavior, but I can say over the years I have worked on being more mindful of my thoughts and words, both toward celebrities, friends, and people in general.
I agree with Pinkett Smith. Why are we attacking these young stars? What’s the drive behind the “attack,” as the actress describes it.
I know some people believe that if these actors, musicians, and other celebrities put themselves out there, they’re opening themselves up to all the good (fame, fortune, fans) as well as the bad (criticism, ridicule, and, in essence, bullying).
How do YOU feel, readers? Are we “bullying” our young stars? Does the media have a responsibility to act, for lack of a better word, more mature when discussing young stars?
Story Source: omg! Yahoo!
Sparks, A. (2013). Things That Make You Go Hmm: Are We Bullying Our Young Artists?. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 11, 2016, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/celebrity/2013/04/things-that-make-you-go-hmm-are-we-bullying-our-young-artists/