There are so many reasons why celebrities are bad role models that it seems puzzling that anyone should look up to them. Of course, some are genuinely positive role models who achieve something worthwhile. Yet it seems to be expecting a lot of people who are just paid to perform. Here are some of the reasons why celebrities are bad role models …
One of the reasons why celebrities are bad role models is that they often set out to shock. It's pretty obvious that Miley Cyrus knows exactly what she's doing with all her onstage antics. But when there's no real message behind such shock tactics, it's hardly something worth emulating. Yet some fans will watch them and think that it's cool - and want to be like their idols.
There's something more than a little strange about the way that we think we know celebrities. Yet all we really know about them is what their PR team allow us to see. We have no idea what they're really like as a person. Are they anything like their image implies? Or do we project our own perspective of what we want them to be like?
Many celebs have some very young fans, and they know that very well. But that doesn't stop them from behaving in a way that's not suitable for their younger fans to see. Although they're not obliged to act like saints, they do bear some responsibility for the image they project when they know they have young fans.
To be fair to celebrities, they are held up to scrutiny and often expected to be infallible - which they are not. How many of us could never put a foot wrong if we were in the public eye? Celebs are only human, just as we are, and it's unfair to expect them to be perfect.
It's not unreasonable to suppose that when celebs act up, they're doing so to get press attention. And it works. Bad behavior always appears in the media, but there is something very cynical about this. Fans lap it up, because they love bad boys (and girls), but why admire someone for attention-seeking behavior? And if they're genuinely misbehaving, that really isn't something to admire.
One of the most annoying things I find about admiring celebrities is that they're basically in it for the money (and attention). Many are vastly overpaid in comparison to their talent. They're not really offering us very much, apart from the chance to wish that we had their money and fame. Is that really something that makes them worthy role models?
Lastly, it's important not to forget the impact that a celebrity's physical image has on fans either. When they see the airbrushed photos so common nowadays, fans absorb the message that this is how women should look. But most celebrities look nothing like their own photos without makeup and airbrushing. So we really shouldn't aspire to look like them, when they don't really look like themselves either!
Ultimately, celebrities are people just like the rest of us; they just happen to get a lot more attention for doing their job than we do. So be selective about whom you admire and why. Don't admire them for doing stupid things - it's really not that clever. Who do you think really deserves to be admired?
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