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Point of View

Stare Contest
Posted by Trevor Roberts on Jun 27, 2014 - 5:52:09 PM

UNITED STATES—This might be the one discussion that Americans never want to talk about. Why do we live in a world where we are obsessed with looks? Why do we stare when something ‘unappealing’ catches our eye? Well, I’ll tell you why: because we haven’t been taught otherwise. The notions of beauty and what is acceptable has been formed by this media glitz culture we live in and we’ve yet to shatter those myths.

 

At the root of this story, is the tale of a little girl whose face was mauled by a pit bull. Most of you may have heard this over the Internet on television by now. The toddler was supposedly dining at a KFC restaurant in Mississippi when her family was asked to leave as the girl’s appearance was disturbing other patrons. First and foremost, new reports have surfaced that this entire incident was a complete hoax. Without gathering confirmation, as many news outlets do, everyone is reporting the story as a hoax, without even knowing if it’s accurate or not.

 

That defeats my point. My concern is the little girl at the root of this story who is receiving national attention that perhaps she never even asked for. My heart melts for this child who didn’t ask for her face to be mauled by a dog (a reason, I’m an advocate against little ones being around dogs, whether it’s a pit bull or any breed of dog). It’s better to be safe than sorry in my opinion. It’s the notion that we live in this culture where adults, yes grown adults will stare, whisper and shun their children from someone who doesn’t look normal in their eyes.

Victoria_Wilcher_1.jpg
Victoria Wilcher suffered facial scars after being mauled by a dog.

 

Can we stop this type of societal/cultural policing that we do? We are all made different. Instead of perhaps whispering and making someone else feel uncomfortable because of one’s ignorance, how about engaging in a conversation to discover what transpired? Instead of shunning someone who ‘looks’ different from the typical norm, or an individual who suffers from an illness, perhaps we educate ourselves more on the situation. The sad thing about this little girl is I’m certain there are many more out there who have suffered similar ridicule.


There is absolutely no need to stare at another individual. Frankly, its one of the rudest things a person can do in my opinion. This is extremely important if the person is doing so out of fear or ignorance. How would you like those tables to be turned on you? Someone staring at you, mocking you, making fun of you or worse discussing a disfiguration that one didn’t ask for.

 

It’s wrong on so many levels it’s hard to fathom. I’ve said this time and time again, that I wish we were a colorblind culture. That’s not related to race, but a culture that doesn’t judge people based on looks. Heck, we shouldn’t judge people at all, because none of us are better than one another. We are all created equal; well at least the Declaration of Independence states that. I mean, we have many laws stating things, that aren’t necessarily true.

 

I’m not certain if this incident really took place, if it was a money grab or not, my concern is the child involved who has been placed at the forefront of a media blitz about the way that she looks. Let’s use this to have a discussion about our obsession about everyone looking ‘normal.’ Ask yourself that question, what does it mean to look normal, who gets to decide that?



 

Cliffside Malibu

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