In Vibe’s June /July 2012 ”Sexy” edition, the urban lifestyle magazine definitely pushes the envelope by featuring reality TV’s hottest vixens, with an eyebrow hoisting caption that reads; “MEET YOUR NEW ROLE MODELS: KANDI, TAMAR, EVELYN& CHRISSY”
Hmmm….. by the looks of the cover two things are quite evident . One , the editor must have one hell of a sense of humor, and definitely doesn’t mind playing into the old adage that controversy sells. Secondly, it indicates to me just how lost our young women will be if we continue to play into society’s perpetuated stereotypes, and the glamorization of reality TV starlets.
Unfortunately, we live in an age and generation where our young women are berated and sensationalized in urban music, being a stripper or groupie is somehow a badge of honor , and landing a role on Bad Girls Club, BasketBall Wives , or Love and Hip Hop is the ultimate ‘come up’. Rightfully, the ONLY lady on the cover that can truly be considered as a role model is Kandi Burruss. Kandi is the only woman amongst the group that’s achieved and accomplished everything by her OWN merits. Unlike her spread mates who have reaped fame and financial rewards through affiliations with pro athletes, rappers, etc.. By our accepting and supporting these types of messages, what are we really teaching our youth and next generation of leaders? Where are more shows such as Braxton Family Values or Erica and Tina, that give young minority women a sense of pride, and a positive representation in the media to align with? Do our young women still have grand dreams of becoming astronauts, media moguls, doctors, or has reality TV caused a shift in thinking to a dream deferred?
In Vibe’s interview with the reality TV divas, the interviewer asks Evelyn Lozada if she considers herself a role model…..
EVELYN ON WHETHER SHE SEES HERSELF AS A ROLE MODEL:
“As a parent I didn’t raise my daughter to look up to somebody on TV as a role model. I want her to look up to her mother, her family as role models. Also, I have nieces who watch the show and love it. So I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place because I’m being me but now I’m coming to the realization that I can’t do… I wouldn’t want my nine-year-old watching this, but their parents do. So I said to myself recently, “Young girls are watching the show. I really need to check myself.” Before reality TV was what it was, I had full control over my daughter’s television because you never know what they’re showing. Every parent isn’t like that. It’s not for me to judge but we’re talking a lot about sex; sometimes there are sexy scenes. I think it’s a little inappropriate, but regardless, I don’t think children should be looking up to reality TV stars as role models.”[Vibe]
Welp that’s one thing the confrontational BBW star and I can agree on; she’s definitely NO role model for ANYONE, including her young adult daughter who unfortunately has to witness her 40 year old mother’s antics on national TV. This here reveals a larger problem at hand. The fact that late 30′s early 40′s women don’t feel the need to be accountable for their actions on national TV, because they don’t in fact BELIEVE they should be looked upon as role models . Well to Ev and other reality stars who share the same ideology, it’s larger than just you, and whether it’s justified or not , there are youth who do look up to you because you are a public figure in the spot light. Ultimately, it’s not just about being a role model for young girls, but more so about creating and representing a legacy that all women can take pride in.
Work Cited: Vibe.com