Chuck Todd hosts NBC news show, Meet The Press, and the stories he reports are critiqued and discussed nationwide. Rachel Maddow hosts NBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show, and is critiqued on her hair style, her wardrobe, her sexuality, and then her report is discussed. Maybe.
Unfortunately, this is the norm.In today’s society, women in positions of power are constantly being ripped to shreds by the media and it infuriates me. The 2011 documentary, Miss Representation, directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom, that I watched in a communication class this week looked closely at this under-representation of women in positions of influence and the media’s disturbingly limited portrayal of what it means to be a powerful women.
Women ranging from politicians to talk show hosts and actresses all weighed in on the heartbreaking world we live in – a world young girls are growing up in with the skewed image of what it means to be beautiful and powerful. They scroll through images of stick skinny Victoria Secret Models and are programmed to believe that that is the standard of beauty to strive for and nothing else. Nowhere in the media is intelligence and just embracing oneself beauty and power in all being preached as what girls should be striving for.
Hilary Clinton rises in the polls, only to be pulled back down by critics slamming her choice of pant suit. Jane Fonda was once told by a director that she needed to remove her back teeth; that she as herself was not good enough.
I firmly believe more discourse needs to occur with girls, especially in the high school / middle school environments, surrounding beauty, influence, and their concerns. Girls need now, more than ever before, to be told that they are beautiful just the way they are and they smarts are valued and should be cultivated and praised daily!