I won’t be bashing anybody’s looks on this blog, and I’d appreciate it if you didn’t either. Not that I think that any of the lovely people who’ve commented here so far would do this, but just wanted to throw that out there.
Over the past few days, I’ve seen an incredible amount of Emmys-related appearance-bashing on various blogs, by both writers and commenters. I don’t want to see that happening here. I mean, it will almost certainly not be happening here with respect to celebrities because I don’t care enough about them to write about them in the first place, thus giving people the opportunity to make hateful comments. But this isn’t limited to comments about celebrities. I’m using the post-Emmys bash-fest as an example because it’s recent and obvious.
I won’t be making those kinds of comments because I do not believe that we as women have anything to gain by bashing other women. I’m using “women” here as a generality. Obviously, there may be people of other genders reading, and if so, this applies to you too! I don’t want anybody bashing the way anybody else looks, is the point.
I’m not going to get too deeply into my “IT’S ALL A PLOY OF THE MAN TO KEEP US DOWN!!!” theories, but as far as I’m concerned, looks bashing (i.e., hateful or judgmental comments about other people’s bodies, hair, nails, whatever) is in the same category as looks obsession in general. And as long as we’re busy dieting and compulsively working out and judging ourselves and everyone else and sniping at each other, we’re not busy reading or learning or improving our liquid eyeliner technique *ahem* or writing in our blogs or oh, say, CHANGING THE WORLD. I also think it’s incredibly sad that women so frequently bond over this type of thing, but that’s a whole other post.
I have no problem whatsoever with constructive criticism, or honest opinions. Hell, I am, as you might have noticed, chock full of opinions myself. And I have no problem with snark either. What I do have a problem with is nastiness for the sake of nastiness.
Here’s an illustrative example:
GOOD COMMENT: Wow, how bizarre that [INSERT CELEBRITY NAME HERE] is refusing to say what brand of tinted moisturizer she wears! I mean, beige lotion is beige lotion, no? What, is her magical fairy moisturizer enhanced with the sweat of unicorns or the tears of a Japanese elf or something?*
BAD COMMENT: OMG [INSERT CELEBRITY NAME HERE] IS SO DUM!!! SHE LOOKS ALL OLD NOW ANYWAY AND SHE HAS THE WORST HAIR EVAR!!! LOL!!! I HATE HER STUPID FAAAAAACE!!!
What it comes down to is this: we are talking about COSMETICS here. It’s all subjective. And one person’s opinion is no better than the next person’s, and nobody’s is necessarily correct. (I can’t count the number of times I’ve been reading a makeup forum and seen somebody say something like “EVERYBODY looks better with makeup, PERIOD,” as though that were an undisputed scientific fact.) Opinions are fine, criticism is fine, personal attacks and value judgments are not fine.
GOOD OPINION: Yeesh, I really don’t care for that color. I think it’s way too dark, and it would look like crap with my skin tone. It’s just not my taste.
BAD OPINION: That color is ugly, and so are you. Plus you’re dumb for liking it. Don’t write anything on the Internet again until you suck at least 33% less.
This sort of thing shan’t be happening around here, and comments like this will be deleted with extreme prejudice. So, I’d appreciate it if the three of you kept that in mind! Especially you, Mom!**
*Yes, this post from All Lacquered Up a couple of days ago (and the ensuing storm of comments) got me thinking about this. I’m not singling this post out; as I said, I’ve seen a lot of this sort of thing over the past week. This was just a very clear example of it, and I thought the blogger handled it very well.
**Just kidding. My mom prefers to bash people who have bad taste in card stock.