Why our reaction to Susan Boyle is what is ugly

Tanya Gold writes in The Guardian why the reaction to the phenomenal Susan Boyle is ugly.

Why are we so shocked when “ugly” women can do things, rather than sitting at home weeping and wishing they were somebody else? Men are allowed to be ugly and talented.

Susan Boyle Triumphant
Susan Boyle Triumphant

Without doubt, the perversely applied standards of beauty torture many women. Think just of one extreme reaction: anorexia and bulimia. Evidence shows this beauty culture cult is spreading as these eating disorders are afflicting more men.

Our culture applies superficial standards that discriminate and tease and put down. Witness Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover, just 11 years old, who was taunted and bullied to suicide.

How much juvenile meanness is passed off as humor by adults? Do you laugh?

Ms. Gold should make us all think, not necessarily about the beauty discrimination evinced over the wonderful Ms. Boyle, but about each of our inner dreams. Why do we let others’ superficial judgments define limits for ourselves? How much passion, talent and humanity is suppressed under layers of cultured self-doubt?

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