For as long as human civilization has utilized societal governance systems, there has been the notion of societal classism whether or not implied or explicitly stated. And as society continues to advance through the industrial revolutions, so — it seems — does the need to persecute, diminish and enslave one another to achieve a feigned sense of superiority. We live in a world where beauty can be either very broad or very narrow-minded depending on who’s TED Talk it is. Some versions of it are prioritized over others or deemed as “better” than others, and yet we’re of the common thought that our children must grow up in a more accepting world that opts out of ostracizing its people. We encourage our children to embrace the respective flaws that they live with in an attempt to optimize their self-concept, and then simultaneously go back on our word when the same might apply to the random stranger on a Twitter timeline or Instagram feed. The hypocrisy that continues to prevail skews the outlook of our offspring on what is beauty, and to whom these opinions matter. We may or may not know it, but we continue to breed a generation that builds walls of persecution to hide their true, benevolent selves.
Institutionalization into this flawed sense of self is quite generational — maybe even sensationalism in the guise of free speech & publicity to a point — and is evident through each generation’s most popular media and information outlet, and how those impressions affected the behaviour of its consumers.
Marilyn Monroe was all the rage mid-20th century because she was the beauty standard of the time, and so she garnered the power and influence to be one of the very first global modern pop culture icons and immortalized trendsetters. At just 18 years old, Naomi Campbell usurped modelling circuit royalty in 1988 as the first black woman to ever be on the cover of French Vogue, and she didn’t miss a beat after that. Nowadays the most notable obsession with beauty standards is exhibited in the fame & fortune that the Kardashian “dynasty” has amassed over the years purely of Kris Jenner’s cunning as a businesswoman. Some may view this, an attribute she has successfully passed on to her daughters, Kris’ best success story, especially Kylie, who reached billionaire status early this year because of her cosmetics company.
The pressure to conform to or at least emulate these key figures surely is an overwhelming burden to those who might deem it important, which frankly is the majority. And now more than ever, information is being shared alarmingly quickly to the maximum amount of people. How, then, do we protect our children while empowering them to form a positive self-concept in such a harsh environment?
One thing I’m sure most have come to realize and continue to see proof of is that discrimination is a doctrine, not a genetic trait. Everyday we see pictures of infants from different races, religions, social classes and income-scale families interact with each other purely off of their innocence — the energies they share even before they build the capacity to learn complex concepts such as discrimination and persecution is proof enough to make us re-evaluate our values as the human race. Those pure moments of interaction are what humanity should be in the first place. They are what we should strive to achieve as opposed to investing all our energies into breeding hatred and funding wars to perpetuate it. The stereotypes we live with day after day can’t be allowed to continue when we are trying to bring up leaders with the humanity to guide us into a future beyond the present global crises we face. The status quo has to be flipped on its head because we can’t leave anyone behind in the revolution. And with our youth at the forefront of this radical conversion of power dynamics, we can’t afford to have them lacking in any way, especially the avenues that matter to them the most.
Beauty should be as widely-spread as possible because that is the very nature of it. “The eye of the beholder” actually encapsulates every single cognizant living organism that views itself as an opinionated being. The version of events that encompasses embracing one’s flaws as a uniquely peculiar pulchritude per se should be propagated to the point of ubiquity. Why should one’s worth be determined by their physical traits, not the quality of their character and the experiences they afford the people around them? Neo-activism is growing constantly and it’s endearing to see the proliferation of contrarian ideas that challenge the way the world has been run for the last 50 or so millennia being spearheaded within our generation, and with impact that ripples throughout our information sharing avenues. No more will society hold a cloak over our eyes in the name of political correctness or any other oppressive buzzword. We shall be free. We Shall Free One Another.