Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Models in the news

Tyra Banks was in the news recently over some pics of her in a bathing suit that makes her thighs look huge. Banks took the right attitude over this, and confronted it by wearing the same bathing suit on her show.

I hope more models and others in the fashion and modeling industry also take on the dangerous habits that models often go through to get VERY thin. One New York lawmaker hopes to get that process started. It's also highly ironic that our day and age has gotten so image-obsessive at a time in which "tolerance" and "open-mindedness" are constantly preached to us like a steady drumbeat.

There's something deeper going on that's interconnected with the "thin" ideal of the modeling industry and our "inclusiveness" obsession - but I need to think on this a little more first before I address this issue with any more depth. However, I will address the response that the ladies usually give when I ask them about this issue. Their response is basically "Men prefer thin women".

That's not totally correct. While men may indeed prefer a slender woman to a woman with a few pounds or more, I don't know of a single man (myself included) that prefers the "Olive Oyl" figure to a woman with healthy feminine curves. The vast majority of men I know (myself included again) prefer women with curves. While some men may like more curves than others, most want women with figures that look feminine - and not the walking skeletons that many models adapt as ideal.

For instance, in this pic of Tyra on the recent cover of People Magazine, I think she still looks totally hot. I prefer her looking like that to her looking like Olive Oyl. If Tyra ever looked like Olive, then I'd seriously worry about her health. I wish I could find the article that gave the following statement - and I apologize for not knowing it word-for-word - but it said something along the lines that women aim for this too-thin ideal not so much to impress men as it is to impress other women.

In other words, women generally are more image-conscious and aware of how they look than men generally are. This is why eating disorders are conditions that largely affects women. It's also why Tyra Banks putting on a few pounds becomes the subject of news stories. Wanting to look good is one thing, but our society's obsession with perfection when it comes to appearance often borders insanity. That needs to change.

When I have thought on this some more, I'll bring it up here again.

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