Dear Dr. brilliant Cliché,
The controversy on photo shopped and airbrushed models is big in the media. This phenomenon apparently encourages anorexia and physical and mental health issues in the female teenage population; according to the people raging over this issue, this practice needs to be regulated. Sure Photoshopping unrealistic body images may be deleterious and mess up woman’s lives but does the public really need to be protected against it and is regulation really necessary? I can think of a lot more serious issues that need more regulation- like banks and pesticides.
What about the adage, ‘if you don’t like it don’t buy it,” ? If you are a concerned parent you can limit your family’s exposure to common media. Don’t subscribe to fashion magazines or leave them around. Don’t allow excessive TV time in your house and don’t subscribe to cable TV. Role model the behavior you wish to see in your kids. Have your kids involved in sports and activities and talk with them about issues like body image, exploitation, drugs, and peer pressure. And remember- average people do average things. Don’t be average.
There are many things regulated to protect kids. For instance there is a movement to regulate advertising to kids regarding E-cigarettes. This may be true, but this product is being made in bubblegum flavor, for god’s sake. Fashion is a trickier subject; where would regulation of that stop? Should paintings of ultra thin woman not be allowed in the media?
Truth in advertising is a big issue. What products sold for profit really are what they advertise? What products being sold as necessary and imperative for your health truly are? The field of marketing is years ahead of the field of psychology on human motivation and behavior. Only recently has psychology started to catch up with the field of behavioral economics.
I don’t have the answers on how to make capitalism conscientious, nor does anyone else. Personally I don’t believe fashion needs regulation but I can understand the argument for it.
Dr. Brilliant Cliché
Granny says: I’m not sure why eliminating cable TV is any protection for your family, Joe- the best science programs and documentaries are on cable.”Reality” shows and other unreal programming exists just as much on network as on cable. If you are going to let TV into your house at all, why limit it to network? That’s absurd.
Whatever you protect your kids from at home, they will be exposed to the moment they leave the house. I know a guy whose parents wouldn’t allow TV, yet he spent most of his time at his friend’s houses watching the same crap they did. Restriction is not the road to wisdom, education is.
Extremes in fashion are scarcely phenomena of this era. Remember the 16″ waists that were favored in olden days? The corsets that broke ribs? The makeup with lead in it that corroded people’s faces?
You can’t protect your kids by putting them in a bubble or telling them that fashion kills. Fashion does not kill. If you are wearing clothes, you support the fashion industry. Anorexia and the inability to resist peer pressure is what kills. A lack of core values can kill. But fashion? If ya ain’t naked, you are a hypocrite.